HLTINF006 – Apply basic principles and practices of infection prevention and control


HLTINF006 – Apply basic principles and practices of infection prevention and control 

#This unit supersedes HLTINF001 – Comply with infection prevention and control policies and procedures.


This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to apply basic infection prevention and control principles in work settings including implementing standard and transmission-based precautions and responding to risks.

This unit applies to individuals working in a range of industry and work setting contexts.

The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Commonwealth and State or Territory legislation, Australian standards and industry codes of practice.

No occupational licensing, certification or specific legislative requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Identify the role of infection prevention and control in the work setting.

1.1. Identify standards and guidelines relevant to own role and work setting.

1.2. Identify infection risks and hazards associated with own role and work setting.

1.3. Identify roles and responsibilities of self and others in relation to infection prevention and control.

1.4. Identify control measures to minimise risk in accordance with relevant national standards and guidelines.

1.5. Communicate effectively with others in relation to risk management.

1.6. Record identified risks and risk management strategies within scope of own role.

2. Follow standard and transmission-based precautions for infection prevention and control in the work setting.

2.1. Implement personal hygiene practices in the work setting.

2.2. Practice hand hygiene in accordance with national standards and guidelines.

2.3. Follow current national standards and guidelines for selection and correct use of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) as required.

2.4. Follow procedures for environmental cleaning and management of waste.

2.5. Identify and respond to situations where transmission-based precautions or enhanced cleaning is required.

3. Respond to potential and actual exposure to infection risks within scope of own role.

3.1. Identify, respond to and communicate potential or actual risk of, or breach in, infection control.

3.2. Assess the risk and take appropriate immediate action in accordance with industry and organisational guidelines.

3.3. Communicate any breach in infection control and risk management strategies in place to the supervisor, manager or responsible authority and seek advice on actions required following a breach in infection control.

3.4. Implement control measures to minimise contamination of people, materials and equipment.

3.5. Follow processes for management of spills and exposure to blood or body fluids.

3.6 Document incidents and responses and report according to organisational policies and procedures.

3.7. Ensure all records, materials and equipment are stored in a designated clean area.


Foundation Skills

Foundation skills essential to performance are explicit in the performance criteria of this unit of competency.

Unit Mapping Information

Supersedes and is not equivalent to HLTINF001 Comply with infection prevention and control policies and procedures.

Assessment requirements

Modification History

Not applicable.

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to complete tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit in the context of the job role, and:

  • implement precautions for infection prevention and control according to national standards and guidelines on three different occasions, each responding to a different identified infection risk, including:
  • carrying out hand hygiene procedures as relevant to the infection risk
  • selecting and using correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • using correct cleaning and waste management procedures
  • respond to three instances of exposure to infection risk, including:
  • at least one instance that involves management of exposure to blood or body fluids
  • documenting and reporting the incident and response
  • identifying and managing clean and contaminated zones.

Knowledge Evidence

Demonstrated knowledge required to complete the tasks outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit:

  • established national standards and guidelines for the prevention and control of infection
  • types of infectious risks in the work environment and associated management to prevent and reduce harm
  • causes of infection, including:
  • classifications of microorganisms – bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites
  • process of colonisation, infection and disease
  • transmission of infectious agents as per the chain of infection including:
  • infectious agent:
  • degree of pathogen exposure
  • reservoir:
  • people, animals and birds
  • other vectors
  • blood and body fluids
  • food, water and soil
  • waste
  • portal of exit
  • transmission:
  • direct contact including contact, droplet and airborne
  • indirect contact including surface or object contamination, penetrating injuries and vectors (animal, insect or parasite)
  • portal of entry
  • susceptible hosts:
  • factors that increase susceptibility to infection
  • personal hygiene practices:
  • personal care and cleanliness
  • use of clean clothing or uniform
  • management and laundering of work clothing
  • not attending work when ill
  • safe respiratory and cough etiquette
  • principles of hand hygiene:
  • hand care, including guidelines on maintaining intact skin, fingernails and jewellery or watches
  • hand hygiene procedures:
  • identifying when hand hygiene is required
  • identifying correct hand hygiene product
  • hand hygiene technique
  • procedure for applying alcohol-based hand rub
  • when to perform hand hygiene with soap and water rather than alcohol-based hand rub
  • precautions where there are breaks in the skin or skin conditions
  • 5 moments of hand hygiene
  • safe and effective use of different types and grades of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including:
  • masks
  • gloves
  • protective eyewear and face shields
  • gowns and aprons
  • techniques and sequence for applying, fitting and removing PPE
  • preventing contamination while applying, wearing and removing PPE
  • safe disposal of PPE after use
  • cleaning procedures:
  • routine environment and equipment cleaning
  • enhanced cleaning
  • reprocessing of reusable equipment or instruments
  • managing a blood or body fluid spill
  • management of linen and clothing
  • principles of asepsis relevant to the job role
  • waste management procedures:
  • disposal of general waste
  • safe handling and disposal of contaminated waste
  • safe handling and disposal of sharps
  • organisational policies and procedures for:
  • managing exposure incidents
  • recording and documenting risks and incidents
  • reporting risks and incidents
  • parties to whom reports may be made:
  • supervisor
  • general practitioner
  • health care professional
  • carer
  • responsible person
  • responsible authority.

Assessment Conditions

Skills must be demonstrated in the work setting with the addition of simulations and scenarios where the full range of contexts and situations cannot be provided in the work setting or may occur only rarely.

Assessment must ensure use of suitable facilities, equipment and resources, including:

  • national standards and guidelines for infection prevention and control and hand hygiene
  • relevant Commonwealth state or territory legislation and industry frameworks
  • hand hygiene facilities and equipment
  • personal protective equipment
  • waste and waste disposal equipment
  • areas, equipment and supplies for cleaning
  • organisational policies and procedures.

Assessors must satisfy the Standards for Registered Training Organisations’ requirements for assessors.

To see more details on the study unit (HLTINF006 – Apply basic principles and practices of infection prevention and control), click here to view the full details here on training.gov

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