Developing an infection prevention program by leveraging the APIC competency model

Published:November 11, 2021DOI:


      • Health care is a complex industry and Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) is a dynamic field. Core competencies ensure IPs are well-rounded and cover the continuum of care. Northwestern Medicine Infection Prevention developed a robust, standardized orientation program utilizing the APIC Competency Model.
      • The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) created a competency model to ensure Infection Preventionists (IPs) are competent in core skills. The 6 competency areas are Professional stewardship, Research, IPC Operations, Quality improvement, IPC Informatics, and Leadership.


      Health care systems are expanding and the health care industry is growing in complexity, necessitating the importance of competent Infection Preventionists (IPs). At Northwestern Medicine, a health care system consisting of diverse facilities with varied patient populations and environments of care, the need for a standardized approach to developing competent IPs became apparent. This Infection Prevention department utilized the APIC Competency Model to develop a framework for Infection Prevention program development, including a standardized orientation guide and career ladder.

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      1. Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology.
        Infection preventionist (IP) competency model, Arlington, VA2021 (Available from:)