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Joining the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology and many other professional organizations, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has issued new guidelines for outpatient clinics that call for mandatory flu vaccination of healthcare staff.
In its first update for ambulatory settings in 10 years, the AAP has published infection prevention guidelines1 that also include a section on patients with cystic fibrosis, guidance during outbreaks, and an emphasis on communication with other healthcare facilities when transferring patients. While calling for mandated flu shots in ambulatory settings, the AAP left it to individual clinics to accomplish that according to their local situation.
“I think that it is important to leave the details to each individual facility because conditions vary from practice to practice,” says lead author Mobeen H. Rathore, MD, FAA. “There are unique challenges and needs to implementing these policies around the country.”
The AAP guidelines also focus on hand hygiene, the cardinal principle of infection control. “I think the major emphasis is on hand hygiene, and how we tell our staff and patients to do that appropriately,” Rathore says.
The guidelines also draw attention to the special needs of pediatric patients with cystic fibrosis, who are at risk of respiratory infections with pathogens like drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Burkholderia cepacia.
“Patients with cystic fibrosis can also be a source of resistant pathogens that could spread to other patients with cystic fibrosis,” the AAP states. “In general, in ambulatory medical settings, standard IPC guidelines should be followed. In addition, when caring for patients with cystic fibrosis, HCP should follow the ‘Contact Precautions,’ and all patients with cystic fibrosis should wear a mask throughout their visit except when in an examination room.”
A summary of some of the other AAP infection control recommendations includes the following:
Financial Disclosure: Senior Writer Gary Evans, Editor Jesse Saffron, Editor Jill Drachenberg, Nurse Planner Patti Grant, RN, BSN, MS, CIC, Peer Reviewer Patrick Joseph, MD, and Editorial Group Manager Terrey L. Hatcher report no consultant, stockholder, speaker’s bureau, research, or other financial relationships with companies having ties to this field of study.