Infection prevention and control

Infection prevention and control

One of our key priorities as a Trust is to promote a safe environment for our patients, staff and visitors, which is why Infection Prevention and Control is so important. This robust service provides advice across our Trust and beyond, reaching out to the GP surgeries, care homes, domiciliary providers and public health nurses.  We work closed with the Integrated Care Board (ICB), Devon County Council and the UKHSA.

We hold ourselves to the highest standard, making sure the risk of contamination and cross-infection is kept to a minimum across all our sites.

Information and about us

We promote a safe environment for staff, patients and visitors, making sure the risk of contamination and cross-infection is kept to a minimum across all our sites.

Our teams work hard to ensure that patients receive the very highest standard of healthcare, but also ensure our staff take infection prevention and control seriously, taking great care to follow our guidance. Although the risk of getting an infection in hospital is low, careful attention to prevention and control is a crucial part of keeping our patients safe.

In addition to our dedicated infection prevention and control teams, there are also infection prevention and control leads at Trust Board, divisional and ward levels.

We are committed to preventing and minimising the spread of infection. This includes:

  • Constantly improving practice to reduce the incidence of infections acquired in hospital
  • Providing advice on the management of individual patients, or suspected outbreaks of infection
  • Robust surveillance on targeted infections, reporting all results back to frontline staff
  • Education and training of all staff
  • Producing infection prevention and control policies, in line with Government guidelines, which are readily available to all staff via the Trust's intranet 
  • Audit of policies and guidelines to ensure that best practice is followed
  • Supporting and reassuring patients and their families using our services

Contact us

Northern services

North Devon District Hospital 

If you would like more information on infection prevention and control please contact the IP&C department on 01271 322680

Eastern services

To contact the Infection Prevention and Control team, call 01392 402355 or email rduh.infectioncontrol-eastern@nhs.net

Out of hours, please call the main RD&E Switchboard on 01392 411611.

Where to find us

Northern services

You will normally be referred to the service by a healthcare professional e.g. GP, and you will be seen in one of our outpatient clinics. The outpatient clinics are held at North Devon District Hospital, Bideford, Holsworthy, Ilfracombe and South Molton Community Hospitals. 

 

Eastern services

RD&E Wonford, Barrack Rd, Exeter EX2 5DW

Stewart Smith House 

Meet the team

Eastern services

Lead Nurse and Director of Infection Prevention and Control: Judy Potter

Other team members include: Clinical matrons, advanced nurse specialists and nurse specialists in infection prevention and control, surveillance practitioners and health care assistants, a service administrator and team secretaries.

‘Cleanyourhands’ campaign

Hand hygiene (washing hands or using alcohol hand gel) is the single most important thing we can all do to stop the spread of infection. This is why you will find alcohol hand gel where care is carried out, e.g at every bedside, and you may also see staff in hospital and community settings carrying personal gel dispensers.

Our hand hygiene strategy is based on the World Health Organisation’s guidelines for hand hygiene in healthcare. Both these programmes recommend the placement of alcohol gel close to where patients are cared for. There are also a number of safety concerns associated with the provision of alcohol gel in unsupervised areas, so for these reasons, we have chosen not to provide it at the main entrances of our hospitals.

You should clean your hands using soap and water when you are visiting someone who has diarrhoea and/or vomiting and at other times alcohol hand gel is a good alternative. If you are unsure which to use ask a member of staff.

It is important to clean your hands:-

  • after using the toilet
  • before eating or helping someone else eat
  • after helping give care e.g. washing, dressing or using the toilet
  • on leaving a ward or department
  • after coughing or sneezing

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Last updated: November 16, 2022