We have recently been asked if the National Standards of Healthcare Cleanliness 2021 guidance is mandatory for General Practice.
We have sought clarification on this from the CQC and it was made clear that they will continue to regulate based on the actual regulations and the official code of practice.
Its infection control mythbuster states:
All providers of healthcare and adult social care should meet or exceed the Code of Practice on the prevention and control of infections and related guidance.
National Standards of Healthcare Cleanliness 2021 replace the 2007 specifications for NHS cleanliness. This guidance mirrors expectations for GP providers which are already covered by our regulations and the code of practice. For example, IPC audit processes, waste management, cleaning schedules and maintenance of equipment.
There are no expectations that we require star ratings or logos to be displayed in General Practices.
The general requirements from the CQC Infection Control Mythbuster are set out below:
- Providers should have an effective IPC policy.
- The policy should include specific requirements for higher risk procedures i.e. fitting of contraceptive devices and minor surgery.
- There should be an IPC lead with overall responsibility for IPC.
- There should be an IPC audit programme.
- The policy should include staff training requirements and frequency of training updates.
- Cleaning contractors should have a schedule of general cleaning.
- Staff should have access to occupational health services.
- The policy should include the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
- Please see the Infection Control Mythbuster for full details.