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National Infection Prevention and Control Manual

National Infection Prevention and Control Manual



Infection Prevention and Control guidance for the Management of Possible, Probable and Confirmed cases of Monkeypox has been published on 1 June 2022.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

ARHAI Scotland have begun the process of transitioning away from COVID-19 specific guidance back to the NIPCM on 10 May 2022.  The Winter Respiratory Infection IPC addendum will only remain live until Monday 11 July. 

Relevant Infection Prevention and Control content from within the addendum which has been moved to the main NIPCM is detailed in a transition graphic and transition document

Public Health Scotland pandemic guidance is available. 

For pathogen specific information go to the A-Z of pathogens.

The NHSScotland National Infection Prevention and Control Manual  (NIPCM) was first published on 13 January 2012, by the Chief Nursing Officer (CNO (2012)1), and updated on 17 May 2012 (CNO (2012)1 Update). 

The NIPCM was endorsed on 3 April 2017 by the Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Chief Pharmaceutical Officer (CPO), Chief Dental Officer (CDO) and Chief Executive Officer of Scottish Care.

The NIPCM provides guidance to all those involved in care provision and should be adopted for infection prevention and control practices and procedures. The national manual is mandatory for NHSScotland, in all other care settings to support with health and social care integration the content of this manual is considered best practice. The Infection Prevention and Control Manual for Older People and Adult Care homes is mandatory within the care home setting.

The manual aims to:

  • make it easy for care staff to apply effective infection prevention and control precautions
  • reduce variation, promote standardisation and optimise infection prevention and control practices throughout Scotland
  • improve the application of knowledge and skills in infection prevention and control
  • help reduce the risk of Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI)
  • help alignment of practice, education, monitoring, quality improvement and scrutiny

The NIPCM currently contains: 

Work is underway to update and improve the NIPCM to further include;

  • A dedicated page showcasing the team ‘behind the NICPM’ and their roles within ARHAI Scotland
  • A dedicated page detailing the literature reviews and rapid reviews developed to inform the content of the NICPM including the methodologies and standard operating procedures (SOPs) used
  • A dedicated page signposting surveillance and outbreak data and the local and national lessons learned from these
  • A compendium of education resources and tools to support application of the NIPCM


When an organisation e.g. when a health and care setting uses products or adopts practices that differ from those stated in this National Infection Prevention and Control Manual, that individual organisation is responsible for ensuring safe systems of work including the completion of a risk assessment approved through local governance procedures.

Last updated: 10 May 2022