Practices must provide care in a clean environment, and patients protected from acquiring infections.

Outcome in plain English

The CQC have not provided any guidance for this outcome.

The CQC advise that the Department of Health’s publication: The Code of Practice for health and adult social care on the prevention and control of infections and related guidance be followed in practice.

The table below sets out the 10 criteria of the 'Code of Practice’ against which a registered provider will be judged on how it complies with the requirement for cleanliness and infection control.

Compliance criterion

What the registered provider will need to demonstrate

 1 Systems to manage and monitor the prevention and control of infection. These systems use risk assessments and consider how susceptible service users are and any risks that their environment and other users may pose to them.
 2 Provide and maintain a clean and appropriate environment in managed premises that facilitates the prevention and control of infections.
3 Provide suitable accurate information on infections to service users and their visitors.
4 Provide suitable accurate information on infections to any person concerned with providing further support or nursing/ medical care in a timely fashion.
5 Ensure that people who have or develop an infection are identified promptly and receive the appropriate treatment and care to reduce the risk of passing on the infection to other people.
 6 Ensure that all staff and those employed to provide care in all settings are fully involved in the process of preventing and controlling infection.
 7 Provide or secure adequate isolation facilities.
 8 Secure adequate access to laboratory support as appropriate.
 9 Have and adhere to policies, designed for the individual’s care and provider organisations, that will help to prevent and control infections.
10 Ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that care workers are free of and are protected from exposure to infections that can be caught at work and that all staff are suitably educated in the prevention and control of infection associated with the provision of health and social care.

 For the full copy of the DoH Code of Practice and Guidance click here.
(Appendix D gives examples of interpretation for primary medical care providers)


What the BMA says

Your practice is likely to be compliant if your practice does the following:

  1. Produces an annual statement, including a summary of: 
    •    any infection transmission incidents and any action taken (If necessary these incidents should be reported in accordance with your local incident reporting procedure);
    •    an infection control audit and actions taken;
    •    at least one Infection Protection & Control risk assessment;
    •    staff training;
    •    any review and update of policies, procedures and guidance
  2. Furnishes premises having regard to national guidance and where possible and reasonable adapts rooms in accordance with risk assessments.
  3. Publishes up-to-date information in your practice on your IPC programme, staff roles and responsibilities, and current infection issues.
  4. Has a mechanism for patients to make comments/give feedback/raise concerns about your infection and prevention control and makes changes to practice as a result of this feedback if appropriate.
  5. Provides advice and treatment to any patient that has an infection and assesses whether there are any communicable disease control issues, consulting local infection control experts or referring the patient for specialist treatment if necessary.
  6. Ensures that everyone working in the practice understands the need to work to prevent and control infections in their daily work.  
  7. Takes appropriate precautions when a patient is suspected or known to have a transmissible infection.
  8. Ensures that staff have access to an occupational health service that is commissioned by the PCT and receive appropriate advice on immunisation (i.e. Hepatitis B) according to their role and duties from the service. We suggest that you document your staff’s immunity.

Your practice has the following:  

  1. A designated infection prevention and control (IPC) lead, and a lead for ensuring appropriate cleaning of the practice environment and decontamination of practice equipment (they can be the same person).  
  2. An infection prevention and control policy.
  3. A decontamination policy.



Primary Care Networks (PCNs)

Partnered with the NAPC, the largest PCN network in England


NAPC logo large

The leading independent resource for CQC compliance

home who reads us
If you are part of an NHS body or a Membership or Regulatory organisation, you may qualify to use our products as a Reference Standard.