Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) standards
The prevention and control of infection throughout healthcare is
everyone’s responsibility and is a major component in the drive
towards a safer NHSScotland.
These standards supersede the NHSScotland Code of
Practice for the Local Management of Hygiene and Healthcare
Associated Infection and all previous HAI
standards produced by Healthcare Improvement Scotland’s
Purpose and scope
This document specifies a minimum level of performance for
healthcare associated infection control services and
applies to all healthcare organisations and practitioners,
including independent healthcare providers, and recognises the role
of all patients, their representatives and the public.
They are aligned with the
National Infection Prevention and Control Manual
(2013), and both documents are key for healthcare
organisations to adhere to, to ensure robust HAI practice and
The standards aim to support healthcare associated infection
services in monitoring their performance and
driving improvement across NHSScotland. Each
standard details what patients and the public can expect of
healthcare services in Scotland following implementation.
The sections below will give you an overview on each of
the 9 standards we have developed in relation to
Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI)
Detailed information including the rationale and criteria for
each standard can be found by downloading the full
Standard 1: Leadership in the prevention and control of infection
The organisation demonstrates leadership and commitment to
infection prevention and control to ensure a culture of continuous
quality improvement throughout the organisation.
Standard 2: Education to support the prevention and control of infection
Education on infection prevention and control is provided and
accessible to all healthcare teams to enable them to minimise
infection risks that exist in care settings.
Standard 3: Communication between organisations and with the patient or their representative
The organisation has effective communication systems and processes
in place to enable continuity of care and infection prevention and
control throughout the patient’s journey.
Standard 4: HAI surveillance
The organisation has a surveillance system to ensure a rapid
response to HAI.
Standard 5: Antimicrobial stewardship
The organisation demonstrates effective antimicrobial stewardship.
Standard 6: Infection prevention and control policies, procedures and guidance
The organisation demonstrates implementation of evidence-based
infection prevention and control measures.
Standard 7: Insertion and maintenance of invasive devices
Systems and processes are in place to ensure the safe and effective
use of invasive devices, for example, peripheral venous catheters,
central venous catheters and urinary catheters.
Standard 8: Decontamination
The environment and equipment (including reusable medical devices
used) are clean, maintained and safe for use. Infection risks
associated with the built environment are minimised.
Standard 9: Acquisition of equipment
All equipment acquired (this being equipment that is procured,
loaned, donated, in-house manufactured, or for use within a trial
or research) for the care environment is safe for use.
Following publication of the new standards, NHSScotland’s Chief
Nursing Officer told NHS boards that, by May 2015, the new
standards should be adopted in line with their existing local
governance processes. Healthcare Environment Inspectorate will
begin inspecting against these standards from June 2015, to allow
NHS boards time to implement them.
Following the publication of the draft standards in August 2014,
we held a 4-week consultation period, gathering comments from
variety of stakeholders.
The consultation feedback report which can be downloaded at the
link above includes all comments received, together
with our response and any subsequent amendments to the
standards. All comments have been anonymised.
Published Date: 2 February 2015