7 Tips for ASC Infection Control Compliance

The following tips for remaining compliant with CMS' infection control regulations for ASCs come from Oregon Patient Safety Commission's infection prevention specialist, Mary Post, RN and Libby Chimes, RN, BSN, owner of IC Solutions, an infection control company in Mount Pleasant, S.C. The two were interviewed for an article in Infection Control Today.

  • Whichever set of infection guidelines an ASC might choose to use, be sure documentation shows consistent application of the selected set of guidelines.

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  • Have a point person — an RN or an LPN as per CMS regulations — at the ASC undergo specialized infection control training to more effectively manage the infection control program and infection control plan.
  • Be able to show continuous documentation and a plan for meeting both state and federal infection control regulations, and know which deficiencies are most common in the applicable state or region.
  • Have a copy of the CMS standards and worksheet printed off and ready to reference for staff interaction and educations, and know the standards inside and out. CMS surveyors may ask about specific parts of the regulations.
  • Perform mock surveys to check for lapses and to accustom staff to the reality of surveys. Unexpected visits after-hours and drop-ins on the front lines of care are also useful spot-checks for compliance.
  • Bring surgeons on board, making sure they are provided with the same information as the staff, though the format of the information might differ.
  • Get the ASC executives, including the boardmembers, involved with infection prevention and control.

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