When do you start sampling in an outbreak?

Caroline Marshall1,2,3

1 Royal Melbourne Hospital

2 Department of Medicine, University of Melbourne

3 Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity


Outbreaks of healthcare associated pathogens occur on a regular basis. Recommendations exist on how to investigate and manage these outbreaks. One of the steps involves trying to determine the source of the outbreak in order to remove that source and terminate the outbreak. This may involve sampling of the environment, equipment, patients or staff. This presentation will examine the evidence regarding the utility of sampling and when this should be initiated. It is important that sampling is purposeful and correlated with epidemiological and clinical data to ensure that the results are meaningful.

About the College

The ACIPC is the peak body for Infection Prevention and Control professionals in the Australasian region. Our stated vision is the prevention and control of infection in our communities. We commenced in January 2012 bringing together the various State and Territory infection control associations formerly in AICA (The Australian Infection Control Association) to support and encourage collaboration across Australasia.

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