This article will discuss what an infection control practitioner is and how to obtain a education to be come a certified infection control practitioner.
Certified Infection Control Practitioner Education
An Infection Control Practitioner (ICP) is a medical professional who isolates and limits the spread of infectious diseases in a healthcare environment to reduce the likelihood of healthcare-acquired infection. Typically, the ICP is a registered nurse, physician, epidemiologist, or medical technologist who has been certified as an ICP though the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology (CBIC).
Certified Infection Control Practitioner Education: Duties and Responsibilities
An ICP is typically responsible for the oversight of all infections. This includes the assessing of all positive cultures, classification and recording of all positive culture documentation, providing consultation and follow-up on exposures to communicable diseases. Additionally, an ICP is responsible for the conducting of in-service courses to employees of the hospitals infection control program, maintenance of hospital’s Infection Control Manual, coordination of the hospital's infection control program and communication to the public health department, CDC and OSHA.
Certified Infection Control Practitioner Education: Requirements for Certification
Certification of an Infection Control Practitioner is not a requirement; however it is highly regarded by current and potential employers as testimony to the commitment of the ICP to remaining current in the practices of infection control methods of detection and containment.
Before becoming certified as an ICP through certified infection control practitioner education, candidates must have completed 2 years of clinical service in the healthcare industry. They must hold a current license and/or be registered as a clinical laboratory scientist or a medical technologist, a physician or a registered nurse or have the minimum of a bachelor’s degree that is in the healthcare related field.
The Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology (CBIC) is a board that administers the certification 150 question proctored examination for ICP's. This exam measures the ICP’s knowledge and practice of infection prevention, infection control and epidemiology.
Certified Infection Control Practitioner Education Certification Costs
Starting in 1981, the future Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology (CBIC) was developed as an independent certification committee. They contracted with a professional testing company to conduct the first job analysis of infection control practices, determine eligibility criteria and develop a recertification plan as an effort to standardize the required education for an ICP. The current costs for CBIC certification include a $310 fee for initial certification, which is good for 5 years, after which time recertification is required in 5-year intervals to maintain certification.
There are two options available for certified infection control practitioner education recertification, which include recertifying by computerized exam at the cost of $275 or, for those who were last certified by computerized exam, recertification by Self-Assessment Recertification Examination (SARE) is permitted, at a cost of $365.