Infection Prevention and Control Career Paths

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that approximately 1 in 25 hospital patients has had at least one healthcare-associated infection-and 75,000 hospital patients died from healthcare-associated infections in 2011. Without a doubt, nurses who specialize in infection prevention and control are in greater demand than ever before. With an infection prevention and control certificate, you can work to identify, control and prevent outbreaks of infection in the healthcare setting.

Why the Infection Prevention and Control Certificate?

Whether you work in a quality control department or are interested in specializing within your practice to coordinate or lead your hospital's infection prevention and control initiatives, an infection prevention and control certificate offers a high-quality education that will help you advance your study of areas such as:

  • Epidemiology and how it applies to environmental risk assessment
  • Infectious diseases
  • Surveillance planning and investigation
  • Public health

Why else should you earn an infection prevention and control certificate? So you can:

  • Work in a dynamic subspecialty of nursing and have a lasting impact on the health and well-being of the community at large.
  • Contribute to the betterment of your organization by helping control costs, minimize adverse consequences of infectious diseases and outbreaks, ensure patient safety, and educate and train hospital staff on best practices for infection prevention and control.

Are you seeking to specialize in infection prevention and control or become more knowledgeable about this contemporary healthcare issue, which now affects hospitals' Medicare reimbursement and efforts to minimize healthcare-associated infections? If so, an infection prevention and control certificate will help you fulfill your career goals.

Salary Information and Career Paths

Here are average salary ranges for infection control nursing careers (job description, salary and growth information comes from O*Net Online and salary.com):

Infection Control Coordinator - An infection control coordinator monitors and investigates sources of infections, reviews techniques for sterilization and disinfection, educates staff and more. $73,492 median annual wage (2014, salary.com)

Infection Control Manager - An infection control manager develops infection control policies to reduce/eliminate outbreaks in a facility, monitors patient care, educates staff and more. $93,965 median annual wage (2014, salary.com)

Staff Nurse, Infection Control - Infection control staff nurses monitor hospitals for possible infection outbreaks, identify isolation protocols, inform appropriate organizations about reportable diseases and more. $79,963 median annual wage (2014, salary.com)

Evaluating Infection Prevention and Control Certificates

Earning a high-quality certificate in infection prevention and control can make all the difference in your career. Here are a few resources to help you as you make the decision.

Earning Certification in Infection Prevention and Control

From the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology - A growing number of employers expect candidates to have or be working toward their Certification in Infection Prevention and Control or CIC® credential. Take the next step in your career by becoming certified in Infection Prevention and Control! read more >>

DiscoverNursing: Infection Control Nursing

Infection Control Nurses, sometimes-called infection prevention nurses, help prevent patient infections in hospitals and clinics. They instruct other nurses and health care staff on proper sanitation procedures; they also study patients' bacteria to identify any infections that may have possibly resulted from a patient's health care. Infection control nurses are usually the ones responsible for notifying the closest branch of the Centers for Disease Control. read more >>

Infection Prevention and Control: Certificate or Degree?

If you're considering specializing in infection prevention and control, but are having difficulty deciding between a certificate or a degree, this infographic will help you compare cost, time to complete, goals and more.

Career Resources

  • Strong Nursing Leadership Is Essential to Reducing HAIs - Hospitals everywhere are adopting evidence-based policies to reduce HAI rates, and many are hiring certified infection preventionists.
  • Leadership Skills for Nurse Managers - This five-part series discusses nurse leadership, career opportunities and much more.
  • General Open House - This archived open house will help you answer questions about the admissions process - including transfer credit evaluation, what documents to submit, the degree plan, how online courses work, financing your education and more.
  • What to Expect from the Evaluation Process - How do we evaluate applicants? What are we looking for when we evaluate prospective students' transcripts? This webinar shares all you need to know about the evaluation process.

Learn More

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