COVID-19 UPDATES

We know that you are working hard to stay safe and healthy, take care of your families, meet the needs of the individuals you serve, and find creative ways to connect from a distance. ASHA members’ and volunteers’ safety is our top priority, and we’re here to help you during this uncertain time. Check for the latest updates and resources, including on telepractice.

Please contact the Action Center (800-498-2071 or actioncenter@asha.org) with any questions.

Infection Control Resources for Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists

The following is a compilation of resources to help audiologists and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in all practice settings protect themselves and their clients, students, and patients from infection. 

ASHA Policy Documents

Quality Indicators for Professional Service Programs in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology
See section III. D. Physical Facilities, Equipment, and Program Environment, for a mention of infection control within program operations. 

Infection Control Basics

Standard Precautions

Standard Precautions used to be called "Universal Precautions." The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends certain practices for the prevention of blood-borne pathogens. Training on these guidelines is mandated annually for all individuals who are recognized as at-risk of occupational exposure for blood-borne pathogens.

Standard Precautions include hand hygiene, sterilization of reusable equipment, isolation precautions, wearing personal protective equipment, following needle safety and sharps disposal procedures, and understanding medical waste disposal.

Hand Hygiene

Hand hygiene is the most effective way to prevent infection and is often considered the first line of defense against germs. Hand hygiene is important for the safety of health care workers and the patients they treat.

Isolation Precautions

Isolation Precautions are precautions that are taken in health care settings to prevent the spread of an infectious agent from an infected or colonized patient to susceptible persons.

Personal Protective Equipment

Personal protective equipment includes gloves, face masks, gowns, protective glasses and other equipment used to provide a barrier of safety between the health care worker and the patient. Federal health care agencies provide specific guidance regarding use of personal protective equipment:

Needle Safety and Sharps Procedures/Disposal

Unfortunately, needlestick injuries occur in health care. Most needlestick injuries involve nurses, laboratory technicians, physicians, and housekeeping staff; however, it is important that all health care workers be aware of the relevant health information.

Patient-Care Items and Environmental Surfaces

CDC Methods for Sterilizing and Disinfecting Patient-Care Items and Environmental Surfaces

Resources for Health Care Practitioners

Resources for School-Based Practitioners

Important Links

ASHA Corporate Partners