Infection Prevention
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Infection Protection

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Infection Protection

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Infection Protection

Provide has a duty of care to protect patients, staff, carers and visitors from the risk of Healthcare Associated Infections. The Health and Social Care Act (Department of Health, 2015) sets out 10 criteria with which Provide must comply with, in order to ensure safe working practices in healthcare. 

All staff are trained to work in a safe, clean and professional manner. We place great importance in reducing the risk of infection for patients, visitors and our staff and aim, through our services, to support care in the community given by both carers and family members.

All our policies reflect national guidance and are reviewed every two years.

We provide infection prevention in primary care settings where NHS healthcare is provided or commissioned, for example in patients’ own homes, podiatry clinics, sexual-health clinics, tissue-viability clinics, integrated-care services, occupational-therapy services, speech and language services, wheelchair services, children’s services, community hospitals and our GP services.

If you are ill or have a wound or medical device, such as a catheter, you’re more at risk of developing an infection. An infection may increase the time it takes you to recover, increase your discomfort and decrease your safety.

As a patient or member of the public, it’s important to make sure you’re aware of information that is available to you and how this can help you to prevention infection and report to us, if you have any concerns.

How you can help us prevent infections

  • Please follow our hand-hygiene guidance.
  • Have your say: if you notice that areas in our hospitals or clinics are dirty, please tell a member of staff or report on our webpage.
  • Please ask your relatives not to visit you in hospital if they have a cold, flu-like symptoms, diarrhoea or vomiting within the past four days.
  • You can become a community antibiotic guardian - read more about this in the leaflet in the section below.
  • You can volunteer to be a patient champion for infection prevention.

Our Infection Prevention and Control Team offers a wide range of support services to our community wards, community clinics and community teams assisting patients in their own homes.

The team supports surveillance of healthcare-associated infections, teaching, monitoring standards and auditing. A support team of Infection Prevention Link Practitioners do monthly audits of hand hygiene, clinical-practice audits and cleanliness audits alongside their everyday work.

We provide support and advice though:

  • Infection prevention and control audits
  • Policies
  • Working with our partners
  • Undertaking Innovative projects
  • Managing outbreaks of infection
  • Monitoring and surveillance
  • Education and teaching in clinical practice
  • Specialist advice and knowledge
  • Study days
  • Infection Prevention Link Practitioners in all our services

Members of the team

Stephanie Dawe: Executive Clinical and Operations Director/Director of Infection Prevention and Control (DIPC)

Nicola Waller: Specialist Infection Prevention Nurse

Dr Louise Teare: Infection Control Doctor

Marcia Hirst: Infection Prevention Nurse

Sarah Newman: Specialist Administrator

Infection Prevention Link Practitioners in each service*

Associate Infection Prevention Ward Nurses for Community Hospital Wards

  • Halstead Ward: Cheryl Shakespere
  • St Peter's Ward: Jeanette Wyman

* Please ask your clinician caring for you for the name of your Infection Prevention Link Practitioner or check on the noticeboard.

How we measure our performance

The Infection Prevention Team audits and evaluates clinical practice by undertaking regular clinical audits with feedback reports, actions, progress and compliance monitoring.

The audits review patient care to ensure best practices are taking place. When necessary, actions are identified to improve practice and these actions are monitored and reported to the local team, quality and safety meeting and the board.

By using your feedback from our patient surveys and the Friends & Family Test, we can assess the impact of infection prevention and control measures on your experience of our in-patient and community services.   

How we report our performance

The Board monitors infection prevention through the bi-monthly Quality and Safety Board Report. The quality measurement is reported in the Board Report under clinical outcomes and reported in the Annual Quality Account Report published on this website.

The Annual Infection Prevention Report reviews the annual programme and reports on all safety and quality outcomes for infection prevention and control. See the document below to read the latest report.

Reduction in healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs)

Provide has a proven track record of excellence in infection prevention and control, achieving all national targets for mandatory surveillance of MRSA bacteraemia and Clostridium Difficile. The figures are reported in the Quality Account Report.


We screen all patients on admission to our wards at Halstead Hospital and St Peter's Hospital in Maldon.

Facilities and Estates cleaning audits

Monthly cleaning audits are carried out by our Facilities and Estates team. See the latest Cleaning Audit here.

Hospital PLACE report

PLACE (Patient Led Assessments of the Care Environment) is a system for assessing the quality of NHS-funded hospital environments.  The latest PLACE reports can be found in the how we are doing section on our home page

Patient surveys and monitoring

We undertake a variety of surveys and monitoring of our patients, including hand hygiene surveys and encouraging patient feedback via our website.

  • Take our Friends and Family Test here
  • Visit our website feedback page here

Patient experience: hand hygiene surveys

Patients are asked to complete a short survey on discharge from our Community Hospitals as part of patient experience surveys. Patients are asked to rate the performance of staff hand hygiene.

They are asked the question: ‘As far as you know, are staff washing or cleaning their hands in between touching patients?’

They have five possible answers to choose from:

  1. Yes, all of the time
  2. Yes, sometimes
  3. Not sure/can’t remember
  4. Not really
  5. No, not at all

The results of the most recent survey are shown here: Hand Hygiene Survey

Contact the team at:


Tel: 0300 303 2642

Useful documents

Clostridium Difficile

Learn about Clostridium Difficile and how to prevent it


Antibiotic Guardian

How to protect against the spread of antibiotic resistance.


Hand Hygiene

Learn when and how to clean your hands



Learn about MRSA and how to prevent it


Pathway for Managing Wound Infection

How to manage wound infection



Learn more about Extended Spectrum Beta-Lactamase Producers



Learn about Norovirus and how to prevent it


Prevent Infections in Hospitals

How to prevent healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) in our hospitals


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