March 10, 2022

APIC outlines actions needed to battle future pandemics while fighting rising HAIs

Editor's Note

The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) on March 8 announced the publication of a new report outlining actions needed to successfully battle future pandemics while fighting the rise in healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

Some recommendations in the 66-page report, titled “Between a Rock and Hard Place: Recommendations for Balancing Patient Safety and Pandemic Response,” include the following:

  • Congress should fund NIOSH efforts to develop a universal, one-size-fits all respiratory device to protect healthcare workers.
  • Congress should fund federal agencies to investigate options for cleanable and reusable PPE.
  • Federal, state, and local governments should recommend the use of masks to the public and share research on the effectiveness of masks with the public.
  • Federal agencies must develop better processes to manage, track, and quickly supply PPE during crises and better anticipate periods of high demand.
  • CMS should mandate that high-risk healthcare facilities staff at least one full-time infection preventionist.
  • Congress should increase capacity for testing and contact tracing to control disease spread.
  • The federal government should provide resources for public health education on the benefits of vaccines for infectious diseases.

APIC is also launching a new campaign, called “HAI Fast Forward: Accelerating HAI Prevention,” which includes a series of initiatives to help organizations reduce their HAIs back to pre-pandemic levels.

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