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Hand sanitising

Current work

More information on the RCN's involvement with infection prevention and control


Provision of professional advice

As part of of its work on infection prevention and control, the RCN works closely with the Department of Health in England. The RCN is actively involved in a number of stakeholder or expert reference group meetings to discuss DH policy on Healthcare Associated Infections, including:

  • National Patient Safety Agency hand hygiene expert reference panel
  • Hepatitis C campaign stakeholder meetings
  • Department of Health essential steps and saving lives refresh workshop

Northern Ireland

RCN Northen Ireland is represented on the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety (DHSSPS) Hospital Hygiene and Cleanliness Reference Group. In addition, RCN Northern Ireland have been in discussion with the Public Health Agency on nursing representation within its new structures.


Healthcare Environment Inspectorate

The HEI was established in April 2009 by the Scottish Government. The focus of the HEI is to reduce Health care Associated Infection (HAI) risk to patients through a rigorous inspection framework. The aims of the inspectorate are to:

  • Provide public assurance and protection, to restore public trust and confidence
  • Contribute to the prevention and control of HAI
  • Contribute to improvement in infection control and the broader quality improvement agenda across NHS Scotland.

Read more about the Healthcare Environment Inspectorate



In 2013 the RCN joined OneTogether, a global movement aimed at improving patient safety by reduce preventable health care associated infections (HCAIs).

OneTogether is a collaboration of professional associations and industry partners with the joint aim of improving patient outcomes.

Despite continued focus on infection prevention, HCAIs remain an ongoing threat to patient safety and a significant drain on health service budgets. By facilitating joint working and connecting resources and expertise, OneTogether aims to empower the health care community to deliver a sustainable change in HCAI incidence.

Read about OneTogether

IPC network

IPC network

More information on the RCN's infection prevention and control network and how you can get involved.
Handwashing in hospitals


See all the latest news from the RCN on infection prevention and control.


27 January

Infection Prevention and Control Commissioning Toolkit

Revised toolkit provides information to support professionals involved in the commissioning or assurance of health and social care services.

10 December

Small changes, big differences: Driving nursing leadership in procurement

Publication examining how involving nursing and midwifery staff in procurement activities can save time, improve patient care and save money. It has been produced in partnership with NHS Supply Chain and the Clinical Procurement Specialist Network.

20 February

Infection prevention and control within health and social care

Publication setting out the current approaches to infection prevention and control and current organisation of the agencies responsible for commissioning, performance management and regulation in the NHS in England.

28 August

Antimicrobial resistance

Publication describing the contribution that nurses and nursing can make at an international, national and local level to reduce the risk of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). Developed to stimulate discussion and ensure nurses are fully involved and engaged with initiatives and actions that impact on AMR.