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National Infection Prevention and Control Manual

National Infection Prevention and Control Manual


7 October 2022. The National Infection Prevention and Control Manual has been updated. Please note this update contains no new guidance, and contains minor revisions only to reflect alignment with the recently published Scottish Government DL (2022) 32.


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)

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 documentThere are 2 appendices available within the NIPCM for acute and community settings which summarise the remaining pandemic measures which exist in addition to the NIPCM and provide links to helpful resources, guidance and policy documents.

Public Health Scotland pandemic guidance is available. For pathogen specific information go to the A-Z of pathogens.

About the National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM)

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 provides IPC guidance to all those involved in care provision and is considered best practice across all health and care settings in Scotland.

The re-launch of the NIPCM by the CNO on 11 July 2022 emphasises the ongoing importance of application of Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) guidance within health and care settings across Scotland. 

Video of Chief Nursing Officer re-launching the NIPCM

It is expected that all NHS Scotland and care home settings apply guidance contained within the NIPCM in order to achieve the aims laid out below.


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.

The national IPC manual aims to:

  • help reduce the risk of Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI)
  • 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 alignment of practice, education, monitoring, quality improvement and scrutiny

The NIPCM currently contains: 

A helpful animation provides details on the content of the NIPCM.