Infection Prevention & Control in General Practice

As a GP responsible for the safety of your patients, your staff and yourself, can you answer 'yes' to the following? If not, you should check out this Infection Prevention and Control eLearning module!

  1. I am confident my hand hygiene facilities are adequate to pass a HIQA inspection
  2. All the GPs, nurses and administration staff working in my practice are Hand Hygiene aware and can identify when and how they carry out Hand Hygiene, according to the WHO 5 moments for HH during their working day
  3. My staff are appropriately immunized and I have documentary proof of it ready for inspection if needed
  4. I am confident the way I reprocess surgical instruments (RIMDS -reusable invasive medical devices) in my practice is compliant with current legislation. I know I use my autoclave correctly 
  5. All primary care staff know what single use items and single patient use items are, and if and how common pieces of equipment can be cleaned
  6. I have a written sharps policy, and immediate action for sharps injury posters displayed in clinical areas
  7. All clinical staff know how to prevent sharps injuries
  8. All clinical staff can demonstrate safe injection procedures
  9. My staff are trained in the management of spills of urine, vomit and blood
  10. Should the Health & Safety Authority make and unannounced inspection tomorrow I am confident I would have the necessary paper work ready, and my primary care team members could demonstrate how they dispose of Healthcare Risk waste and Healthcare Non-risk waste into the appropriate waste stream
  11. We have a documented environmental cleaning policy
Under the weather: 
This eLearning module is divided into 5 key lessons . Each lesson comprises a video presentation conveying the core material. Most presentations are under 10 minutes long to facilitate opportunistic learning. Supplementary lessons, where non-core material is presented, and relevant printable and downloadable material are also included within most lessons.Development of this module was funded by an unrestricted educational grant from The HSE.


The 5 lessons are as follows:

  • Lesson 1: Transmission of Infection

Underpinning all guidance on Infection Prevention & Control (IPC) is a desire to minimise the risk of healthcare acquired infections (HCAI) among both patients & staff in a primary care. This lesson summarises some of the science around preventing transmission of infection in the GP setting. 

  • Lesson 2: Taking Standard & Transmission-Based Precautions

This lesson outlines a set of practices or 'Standard Precautions' which should be implemented in your surgery, to ensure that you do not put yourself or others at risk of contracting a healthcare acquired infection. 'Transmission Based Precautions' are also addressed, which are additional precautions that apply when a patient with a suspected or known transmissible infection presents.

  • Lesson 3: Prevention & Management of Sharps Injuries

The safe use & disposal of sharps in a primary care setting is essential in preventing transmission of blood-borne viruses. This lesson outlines procedures which have been shown to reduce the risk of sharps injuries. The management of a sharps injury and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) are also discussed.

  • Lesson 4: Minor Procedures and ANTT in General Practice

The principal aim of Aseptic Non-Touch Technique (ANTT) is to prevent micro-organisms present on hands, surfaces or equipment, from being introduced to a susceptible site such as a surgical wound. This lesson demonstrates how ANTT should be applied during minor surgical procedures in general practice. 

  • Lesson 5: Protecting Practice Staff & Patients from Infections

Both clinical and non-clinical staff in primary care, are at risk of contracting healthcare acquired infections in the workplace. Patients too are at risk when they visit the surgery. This lesson summarises how risk can be minimised among each of these groups.


The Medical Council has defined eight domains of good professional practice. These domains describe a framework of competencies applicable to all doctors across the continuum of professional development from formal medical education and training through to maintenance of professional competence. Since they describe the outcomes which doctors should strive to achieve, doctors should refer to these domains throughout the process of maintaining competence. In order to assist you in planning your professional competence, ICGP eLearning highlight the domains addressed in each module as set out below. 
NOTE: While a number of ICGP modules have a tight focus on one or two domains, most modules endeavour to address all domains to some degree (low, medium, high). This is clearly displayed in the diagram below

Domains of Practice

Last modified: Friday, 7 October 2016, 1:27 PM