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Infection Prevention and Control in the Podiatric Medical Setting

Challenges to Providing Consistently Safe Care

Matthew E. Wise MPH, PhD1, Elizabeth Bancroft MD, SM2, Ernest J. Clement RN, MSN, CIC3, Susan Hathaway RN, MPH2, Patricia High MHS, MCHES4, Moon Kim MD, MPH2, Emily Lutterloh MD, MPH3, Joseph F. Perz DrPH1, Lynne M. Sehulster PhD1, Clara Tyson RN, MSN2, Mary Beth White-Comstock RN, CIC1, and Barbara Montana MD, MPH5
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  • 1 Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA.
  • | 2 Acute Communicable Disease Control Program, Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Los Angeles, CA.
  • | 3 Bureau of Healthcare Associated Infections, New York State Department of Health, Albany, NY.
  • | 4 Public Health Nursing, Clinic Services, Ocean County Health Department, Toms River, NJ.
  • | 5 Communicable Disease Service, New Jersey Department of Health, Trenton, NJ.
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Unsafe practices are an underestimated contributor to the disease burden of bloodborne viruses. Outbreaks associated with failures in basic infection prevention have been identified in nonhospital settings with increased frequency in the United States during the past 15 years, representing an alarming trend and indicating that the challenge of providing consistently safe care is not always met. As has been the case with most medical specialties, public health investigations by state and local health departments, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have identified some instances of unsafe practices that have placed podiatric medical patients at risk for viral, bacterial, and fungal infections. All health-care providers, including podiatric physicians, must make infection prevention a priority in any setting in which care is delivered.

The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Corresponding author: Matthew E. Wise, MPH, PhD, Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE, MS A-35, Atlanta, GA 30333. (E-mail: cxx4@cdc.gov)