Some go on to graduate work to earn a master's degree in the specialty or they become nurse practitioners. Infection control nurses sometimes serve as disease detectives, searching for the origin of a particular germ and studying its characteristics, such as drug resistance. This article outlines some of the challenges that nurses may experience in ensuring effective infection prevention and control, and how these can be addressed. As resistant organisms continue to emerge and evolve, and antimicrobial agents become less effective, infection prevention and control remains a vital aspect of maintaining public health, particularly among vulnerable patient groups such as older people and young children. You will also need two of the five following components: All infection prevention professionals who become certified may use the internationally recognized initials CIC (certified in infection control) after their name and in their title. Lillee Gelinas, MSN, RN, CPPS, FAAN Editor-in-Chief. Infection control nurses play a critical role in protecting public health—and the need for new practitioners in this specialty is more evident than ever. This blog post breaks down the core responsibilities of an infection control nurse and outlines the educational requirements you need to step into this role. Nurses play a vital role in preventing the development and spread of infections among hospital patients. It is essential that they receive training from the infection control team to ensure their c … With an extensive number of applications and areas of expertise, it can sometimes be difficult to discover the key facts about this wide-ranging role. Infection prevention and control is of utmost importance. It is a requirement of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 code of practice and national standards in the devolved administrations. They also work with government public health officials to track and contain disease outbreaks in communities. As the increased use of antibiotics has laid the groundwork for increased resistance of infection to certain treatments, the role of an infection control nurse to monitor occurrences and educate patients and staff on the prevention and control of diseases has grown. About one in 20 people admitted to the hospital will acquire an infection, from pneumonia to meningitis, while in the hospital. The nursing profession describes its primary role as patient advocacy. Hospital Infection Control and Nurse Duties. The discipline of epidemiology is broadly defined as “the study of how disease is distributed in populations and the factors that influence or determine this distribution” (Gordis, 2009: 3). In addition, if you are a nurse who would like to expand your knowledge about infection prevention and control, the Infection Prevention and Control Certificate is an excellent option. As managing editor of a group of newspapers for older adults, she also writes about transitioning from work to retirement, post-retirement jobs and the gig economy. They must pass the National Council Licensure Examination to become a registered nurse. Job Duties Nursing homes are not the only facilities that have problems with infectious diseases. Infection prevention and control is a discipline that aims to prevent or control the spread of infections in healthcare facilities and the community. IPC programmes include activities, procedures and policies designed to reduce the spread of infections, usually within healthcare facilities. Upon graduation, you are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination – Registered Nurse that is administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. Infection control nurses with more than 15 years of experience can expect a salary of around $95,000. Nursing Careers 1-2 What is an infection prevention and control programme? Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs) constitute a major health problem in the intensive care unit (ICU). The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that nurses who specialize, such as those in infection control, will have better job prospects. Introduction. Burnett E (2018) Effective infection prevention and control: the nurse’s role. Graduation from a post-secondary school. Infection control and the prevention of all infection remains a major goal within all healthcare settings, and lies with all healthcare professionals and personnel’s responsibility to ensure this is achieved. Nursing Standard. Their role is to increase awareness of infection control issues in their ward and motivate staff to improve practice. In order to accomplish this, you must pass the Certification in Infection Control exam administered by the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology. Your facility will have infection control and prevention plans, policies, procedures, and protocols for addressing the care and placement of patients suspected of having a communicable disease. Recertification is required every five years. Some are associated with specific germs such as Clostridium difficile (you might hear this referred to as ‘C.diff’), which causes diarrhoea. Citation. Eligibility requirements are: 1. What are the Different Types of Advanced Practice Nurses? Substance Abuse Nurse Practitioner Certification, Geropsychiatric Nurse Manager Job Description. This means infection control nurses, also called nurse preventionists or infection control specialists, perform a wide range of duties: Infection control nurses work in the following settings: Infection control nurses are RNs who obtained an Associate of Science in Nursing degree (takes two years to complete with full-time attendance) or a Bachelor in Science of Nursing degree (takes four years to complete). Responsibilities of an ICN ICNs monitor, identify, prevent and control the occurrences of infectious diseases in healthcare settings and communities. Infection control RNs work to find and isolate disease outbreaks in hospitals, as well as to determine ways to minimize spread of infections. Certification is not mandatory to practice as an infection control nurse, but without it, finding a job will be difficult since most clinics and hospitals prefer to hire someone with the credential. Part of this job growth is tied to the aging of the population and the increased need for health care. This is due to the increasing concerns over new and drug resistant organisms, pandemic flu outbreaks, and bioterrorism threats. Infection Control Nurses Have an Important Role in the Healthcare Field, What You Need to Know about Becoming a Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner. 1,340 Views. Nursing Standard. Role of Nursing in Infection Control 1. An Infection Control Practitioner is a highly-skilled and sought-after healthcare professional who is responsible for the prevention, investigation, observation and reporting of infectious diseases across a wide range of environments. Considering that Nurse is in the constant touch with the patient and is also the important link between clinician and patient, the training program aims at creating large work force of empowered nurses, who can help in prevention and control of infection within the hospitals/ nursing homes and which is known to have huge potential in improving of clinical outcomes. As part of this movement, infection control nurses (ICNs) are responsible in preventing the spread of these infectious diseases that could imperil the patient, community and healthcare workers. The exam consists of about 130 questions covering such areas as disease surveillance and employee health. Infectious disease nurses also sometimes work with doctors and researchers to develop new ways to treat diseases caused by microbes. While the path to becoming an RN requires either a two- or four-year college degree, most nurses who specialize in infection control earn a bachelor's degree. The Salary Range for an RN With a Master's in Public Health, Public Health Officer Career Opportunities. The very first requirement in a hospital is that it should do the sick no harm Dr.T.V.Rao MD 2 According to Salaryexpert.com, these nurses, if employed in large cities, earn a salary that ranges between $69,982 and $76,430. Senior nurses were the main trainers and the designated staff in every infection buffer zone to ensure personal protective equipment (PPE) was put on and taken off properly. Licensure is mandatory in all fifty states and the District of Columbia. It is essential that they receive training from the infection control team to ensure their competence. The role of the professional nurse in preventing HAIs is significant. In order to gain the experience you need to take the certification exam, you can: The career outlook for infection control nurses is excellent. They then take an online exam administered by the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology. While most infection control nurses work in hospitals, they are critical in other settings as well, such as nursing homes, assisted living and urgent care. Certification in this field is important for several reasons: Helpful Steps to Becoming an Infection Control Nurse. The employer, education, and certification play a large part in determining wages. Nurses play a key role in environmental decontamination in a number of … As an Infection Control Nurse your role is to identify, create, and employ best practices for sanitation and infection management. doi: 10.7748/ns.2018.e11171. Entry-level nurses in this specialty earn an average annual salary of about $80,000, while those with 10 years of experience make about $90,000. The role of epidemiology in infection control and the use of immunisation programs in preventing epidemics. Nursing homes are not the only facilities that have problems with infectious diseases. Whether it’s a contained infection or a global pandemic, your colleagues will look to you for guidance in controlling and eliminating infectious threats that may be present. 2. Nurses protected all medical team members by leading the provision of rigorous infection control training and making sure infection control policies were strictly adhered to. • Ensure the infection prevention and control procedures meet CMS, DNV, county and state, APIC and CDC regulations, standards or guidelines. WITH the launch of American Nurse Today’s new monthly section on infection prevention, I want to highlight the pivotal role nurses play in preventing hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). Infection prevention and control There are many kinds of infections that patients/clients can acquire while accessing health care services. Link nurses act as a link between their own clinical area and the infection control team. Hospitals are a hotbed of germs, and infection control nurses are at the front lines of keeping germs at bay, so that their patients can recover from their illness, rather than become sicker. They help ensure that proper infection control protocols, from hand washing to wearing masks when necessary, are being followed by all hospital staff members. Healthline: What Are Nosocomial Infections? According to the International Federation of Infection Control, an Infection Control Nurse (ICN) or Practitioner is generally a registered nurse possessing the academic education and practical training – allowing him or her to work as a specialist advisor in every aspect related to Infection prevention and control. Sufficient experience (at least two years is recommended) in infection prevention and control which includes: 3. While it's not required, some continue their education by getting infection control certification. Infection control is a fundamental aspect of a nurse’s role, as well as the responsibility of everyone who works within healthcare systems (Department of Health (DH) 2006a). Nurses play a major role in the successful implementation of infection prevention strategies in the intensive care unit. Registered Nursing.org: What Is an Infection Control Nurse? Salary.com: Staff Nurse - RN - Infection Control in the United States, Graduate Nursing Edu: Infection Control Nurse (ICN), Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology, Bureau of Labor Statistics: Registered Nurses: Job Outlook. They also educate others on how to recognize and prevent disease outbreaks. As more "superbugs," that are resistant to antibiotics emerge, the role of infection control nurses has taken on greater importance. As for nurses, they are directly involved in providing a biological safe environment for the patients and plays a critical role in preventing and controlling infectious disease (Chitimwango, 2017). Nursing Role. Even in a sterile and sanitary environment, an infection can easily spread causing patients to become ill and possibly die. What Is an Infection Control Nurse? The role of an infection control nurse is to determine, prevent, and contain infectious outbreaks in the healthcare setting. Infection control nurses play an important role in the medical field, especially since infections are the main source of mortality and morbidity for nursing home residents. August 31, 2015 The process of infection control includes a variety of strategies and techniquesacross the continuum of perioperative care, including the pre-operative, intra-operative,and post-operative phases. Infection control has become one of the most important positions in healthcare. It is five courses and is aligned with the evidence-based, foundational components of … Sometimes referred to as Infection Control Specialists or Nurse Infection Preventionists, Infection Control Nurses specialize in preventing, containing, and treating infectious diseases caused by agents like bacteria, parasites, viruses, and fungus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 20 hospitalized patients will contact a healthcare-associated infection every year. As a sub-specialization for clinical nurse specialists, and one occasionally held by nurse practitioners, fundamental knowledge of infection control techniques and protocol is learned on the job and through graduate level CNS and NP programs specific to a particular patient population focus. Infection control is a fundamental aspect of a nurse’s role, as well as the responsibility of everyone who works within healthcare systems (UK Essays, 2013). The role of nurse consultant was established in 1999 as part of the national ‘Making a Difference’ nursing strategy. If an infection control nurse sounds like the career for you, contact us for more information. Nurses play a crucial role in preventing and controlling transmission of the infection through the application of standard precautions and maintenance of the health care environment. As nurses become more experienced, their salaries rise. Their role is to increase awareness of infection control issues in their ward and motivate staff to improve practice. In hospitals, infected patients are a source of infection transmission to … More recently, the focus has centered on MRSA and penicillin-resistant tuberculosis. Barbara Ruben has a master's degree in journalism and has written career-based articles for The Washington Post, Working Mother and Chron. • Participate in infection prevent and control education of all employees during orientation and annually thereafter, including classes in infection prevention and control practices and employee health. The average salary of an infection control registered nurse is $87,487. Role of Nursing in Infection Control Dr.T.V.Rao MD Dr.T.V.Rao MD 1 2. Healthcare-associated infections and antimicrobial resistance are significant threats to public health. The need for registered nurses of all specialties is expected to expand 15 percent from 2016 to 2026, a much quicker pace than for most professions. Effective environmental decontamination facilitates the prevention and control of infection. Those seeking certification usually take addition coursework in microbiology, epidemiology, public health and additional relevant subjects. How Much Does an Emergency Room Nurse Make an Hour? Paralegal Certification: The Ultimate Guide, Ultrasound Technician Requirements – State By State, They may be appointed by a medical facility as a coordinator for an infection and control program, They determine, contain, and prevent outbreaks in the healthcare community, Epidemiologic and surveillance investigations, Collecting and analyzing data when a healthcare-associated infection occurs, Monitor hazardous practices and procedures, Give consultations on infection risk assessment, control, and prevention strategies, Inform local, state, and federal authorities about reportable diseases, Identification of infection disease processes, Surveillance and epidemiology investigation, Preventing and controlling infectious disease transmissions, Cleaning, sterilization, disinfection, and asepsis, It proves you have an internationally recognized level of knowledge in infection control, It makes you feel a sense of professional accomplishment, It lets your colleagues and employer know about your commitment to professional growth in infection prevention and control by keeping your knowledge and skills current, Volunteer to serve on a nursing infection control committee and conduct infection control in-services for staff members, Talk to the head nurse of your current department about adding infection prevention and control as one of your official duties. Link nurses act as a link between their own clinical area and the infection control team. Infection control nurses play an important role in the medical field, especially since infections are the main source of mortality and morbidity for nursing home residents.
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