Infection prevention is everyone’s job

The Reality of Healthcare-Associated Infections

Healthcare-associated Infections (HAI).1 These infections significantly delayed recovery, increased expenses, and led to increasing mortality. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the threat HAIs pose for healthcare organizations, with 3.7% of hospitalized COVID-19 positive patients developing additional infections in 2020.2 At Greeley, we act with urgency, building a culture of prevention – so you can do the same.

The statistics behind HAIs are significant:3

  • Approximately 90,000 American patients who acquire an HAI will die annually.
  • HAIs can be reduced by as much as 70% with the support of proper patient safety interventions.
  • The cost of a single HAI case can be upwards of $50,000, depending upon the type of infection.
  • Hospitals incur $28 billion to $45 billion annually due to HAIs.

Here at Greeley, #PreventionReady aims to keep you ahead in the race to prevent infections through patient-focused, sustainable solutions.

Proactive infection prevention

Conquering infection prevention relies on the actions of all hospital employees and medical staff members. The risks to accreditation, financial security, and patient safety demand that hospitals make proactive, bold improvements to their infection prevention programs throughout the organization.

In 2019, infections made up 68% of The Joint Commission’s serious “requirements for improvement” citations.4 That was pre-COVID. As TJC becomes more focused, more digital, and more stringent in future – as is likely – that number is at risk of climbing. It’s time to get more proactive about infection prevention.

The Greeley Company brings decades of experience shining a light on the root causes that result in repeat infection-related issues. Together, we will implement evidence-based, proactive approaches to accelerate your speed and effectiveness as you develop a mature #PreventionReady culture.

Being #PreventionReady helps mitigate financial risk:

  • In 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) penalized 800 hospitals for high infection rates, patient injuries, and potentially avoidable medical complications.4
  • Patient safety penalties cost hospitals 1% of Medicare payments and a 3% payment reduction for readmission penalties.5
  • CMS also imposed more than $15 million in civil money penalties to more than 3,400 nursing homes due to noncompliance with infection control requirements.6
  • Currently, accreditation agencies are projected to increase the number of adverse actions, such as preliminary denials of accreditation, for significant issues that recur.

Shared responsibility

Identifying the “why” behind potential survey findings will help you realize and resolve vulnerabilities and, ultimately, sustain a more effective, more mature infection prevention program.

Greeley utilizes infection-related data and a unique infection prevention maturity model to help clients strategically assess the effectiveness of their programs across a spectrum of domains critical to the control and prevention of infections.

Infection Prevention Maturity Model


reactive, crisis-focused, submerged within the organization


better links with operations, well positioned within the organization


operational leadership assumes responsibility for infection prevention, strategic plan implemented at the executive level

This effectiveness evaluation is followed by a drill down into the status of your program with respect to eight essential functions of infection prevention:

  1. Strategic risk assessment
  2. Surveillance thoroughness and credibility
  3. Process design and implementation
  4. Meeting management
  5. Data collection and reporting
  6. Survey readiness
  7. Antimicrobial stewardship
  8. Emergency preparedness

Additionally, we assess levels of executive sponsorship and staffing and organization. We look at topics like leadership, staffing levels, accountability, competency, and continuing education. Operational reviews include interviewing leaders and analyzing organizational structures, policies and procedures, practices, quality logs, staff scheduling, training, and competency assessments.

Getting at and resolving root causes of potential infection prevention findings is critical to advancing along the maturity model spectrum.

Where does your organization stand?

This seven-question Infection Prevention and Control Program self-assessment will help you determine your level of readiness. Take the quiz and see your score.

Prevention ready culture

Infection prevention programs are most effective when there is Board and C-level sponsorship. Infection preventionists should have a “seat at the table,” empowered to lead, influence and collaborate throughout the organization.

Greeley provides materials and insights to the C-suite to help them understand where their organization is on the maturity spectrum and why infection prevention is a critical topic. This elevation in perception is important for infection preventionists to have the influence to create collaborative solutions with operational leaders and be able to present those solutions to the C-suite.

To ensure a successful #PreventionReady culture, the infection prevention department should be highly valued and recognized as subject matter experts, with clear lines of staffing authority and leaders possessing the experience and knowledge to engage and develop staff.

Organizational model

Helping leadership design effective infection prevention organizational models

Greeley guides clients from a reactive, crisis-focused infection prevention model, to a sustainable mature model with the right structure and talent.

In many places, infection prevention has been an under-resourced department – even a one-person-department – with the expectation that they would execute and be responsible for the success of the whole infection prevention program. Experience tells us this construct should be challenged.

A mature model includes operational leadership assuming responsibility for infection prevention and implementing a strategic plan at the executive level. The executive team should receive and review reports on infection trends, patterns, and performance on a regular basis.

We will guide your operational leadership on effectively analyzing survey data and infection rates, monitoring performance, and designing and implementing infection-related improvements with executive-level leadership.

Leadership expertise

Based on decades of nationwide experience, Greeley’s best-in-class subject matter experts will readily and reliably guide you to craft practical solutions for persistent compliance and efficiency challenges.

Greeley brings a high-touch, customized approach to each consulting engagement – whether it’s focused on moving our clients toward being #PreventionReady or helping them to implement a sustainable solution following an adverse finding. We bring a cross-section of experience – from former surveyors to experienced clinical leaders and certified infection preventionists – with the added benefit of having worked across hundreds of healthcare systems. Our maturity model is built on this deep experience.

Our consultants understand the nuances and politics of working within a hospital or health system. They understand the healthcare and regulatory pain points and possess the necessary skills, training, experience, and expertise to support clients with evaluating, preparing, training, and educating about methods to drive your healthcare organization to success with practical approaches.

Together, we will help you navigate toward a proactive, mature infection prevention program and coach you on utilizing evidence-based, cutting-edge tools and strategies with speed.

Infection prevention

The risks to accreditation, financial security, and patient safety mean that failure is not an option. Here at Greeley, we’ll help you take practical steps to minimize the risk of infection prevention, including:

  • Identifying risk and taking action
  • Being proactive, not reactive
  • Creating a culture of prevention through responsibility and accountability
  • Designing effective infection prevention organizational models
  • Deploying leadership experts to build practical solutions

Together, we will help you develop a resilient, proactive infection prevention program, based on decades worth of experience, advanced industry tools, and a strategy that empowers the entire organization to build a culture of infection prevention.

We call it #PreventionReady, please get in touch to find out more.

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