Infection control is the name given to policies and procedures intended to prevent the spread of infectious diseases among staff and service users. All of the staff working in a care home or a domiciliary care setting are at risk of infection, or of spreading infection, especially if their role brings them into contact with blood or bodily fluids like urine, faeces, vomit or sputum.

This topic provides an overview of the infection control guidelines and regulatory standards that apply in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It also covers the management arrangements that adult social care providers need to have in place to minimise the risk of infection for both service users and staff, including those for managing disease outbreaks in residential settings.

Further details on practical measures to prevent the spread of infection can be found in the Infection Prevention and Control Procedures topic. This includes hand hygiene, cleaning and dealing with body fluid spillages. Further information on specific contagious diseases and infectious organisms can be found in the Healthcare-associated Infections topic.

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