Heading to Hemel for our next IPC forum

Linda Jones, Head of Patient Safety & Quality Governance at IHPN looks forward to a very exciting next “in person” meeting of our Infection Prevention and Control Forum – the best news being, there are still places available!

Over the past few months, I’ve been delighted with the response in bringing back into focus our IHPN Infection Prevention & Control forums.

Last November we had a really good audience to an online forum. Keynote speakers included the Florence Nightingale Foundation and NHS England who provided valuable insight into their IPC leadership and workforce programme.

Providers within the healthcare system have faced extremely challenging and uncertain times throughout the fluctuating waves of the COVID-19 pandemic with very little opportunity to meet colleagues working in the IPC space.

As good as webinars, Zoom and Microsoft Teams have been throughout the pandemic and beyond; as the uncertainty of the pandemic slowly starts to settle, the opportunity for IPC clinicians to get together face to face to collaborate and share best practice is I am sure welcomed by all. I know I certainly get so much more value from meeting others in person.

So, it’s with this mind that one of the main aims of the next IHPN IPC Forum – on the 13th of July – is simply to provide the opportunity for Infection Prevention & Control leads to come together to share their learnings and knowledge.

However, not content with just creating a chance to chat, I’m also really looking forward to hearing some brilliant speakers we have lined up!

Great venue

We are really fortunate to be hosting this event at the superb facilities of Gama Healthcare in Hemel Hempstead. For anyone who’s not been, it’s a great setup they have – with fantastic facilities for both the main sessions, and also on-site clinical areas where they usually lead their own training, so it’s certainly a great environment.

There will be fantastic networking opportunities with several stands on offer demonstrating areas such as Surgical Site Infection, IQ online training system, surface cleaning products, air ventilation and capital equipment.

The breakout rooms will provide additional collaboration opportunities with likeminded colleagues with the focus being on IPC workforce and challenges. There’s plenty of parking and it’s very accessible from Watford Junction Railway Station for those of us who have a few miles to travel. Further details can be found at 

Speaker highlights

Kicking off the day, we are delighted to be joined by Ron Daniels from the Sepsis Trust. Ron is Founder and Chief Executive of the UK Sepsis Trust and we’re so delighted he’s making time in his busy schedule to be with us.

As well as being an NHS Consultant in intensive care, based in Birmingham and Vice-President of the Global Sepsis Alliance, Ron drives the Sepsis 6 treatment pathway and worked with the NHS to ensure that, immediately prior to the pandemic more than 80% of patients presenting with suspected sepsis were receiving appropriate antimicrobials rapidly.

He is ever mindful of the antimicrobial stewardship agenda and will be sharing his knowledge around sepsis with us as the first speaker of the day – last year he conceived of and brought to fruition the Infection Management Coalition, which he will speak about on the day. 

Sue Millward, Clinical Lead (IPC Education) from the NHSE National Infection Prevention and Control Team will be talking to us about the national IPC Education Programme. Sue is an Infection Prevention Nurse with over 30 years of IPC experience within both the NHS and Independent Healthcare sectors. She has presented and published papers on the topic of Infection Prevention both nationally and internationally and was the first Editor of the Journal of Infection Prevention.

Sue will share an overview of the recently published IPC Education Framework for health and care staff which the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to facilitate delivery of evidence based safe and effective care to all our patients and how the framework could be used at organisation level. She will then provide an update on progress with the development of the second part of the Education framework which sets the standards for the development and growth of the IPC workforce 

Also, from NHSE, Emma Brookes is Head of Soft FM Strategy & Operations and has been with the Estates and Facilities team at NHS England since July 2017. Emma is responsible for policy and strategy development for soft facilities services across the NHS in England, with a portfolio which includes cleaning, catering, portering, security, linen, and laundry.

Emma has led on the National Standards for Healthcare Cleanliness project, and we will have the pleasure of hearing Emma share her experience and knowledge of these standards. The standards represent good practice, managing risks and cleaning activities and presents ideas of how to demonstrate quality management systems in your environmental cleaning, making the process more vigorous as opposed to a checklist task. 

Professor Rob Townsend will be dialling in on the day to increase our awareness and knowledge of theatres and ventilation which as we all know now is a hot topic in the IPC world. Rob works as a Consultant Medical Microbiologist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and supports some organisations in the independent sector. He is an honorary clinical lecturer for both Sheffield Hallam University and the University of Sheffield.

Rob’s main clinical interest area is orthopaedic infections, where he has initiated orthopaedic ward rounds and an arthroplasty MDT on a weekly basis. Rob gives educational lectures both nationally and internationally on orthopaedic infections. We are pleased to have Rob share detail on requirements for the provision of ventilation in healthcare premises and current standards available to providers. As we know, hospitals are full of vulnerable people, if ventilation is inappropriate or inadequate the results can be devastating. 

Rob’s session leads us into the update from Dr Philip Norville from Gama Health on emerging Pathogens in Infection Prevention & Control. Philip has over 10 years’ experience working with healthcare organisations, helping improve and implement effective infection prevention solutions. He has a PhD in microbiology from the University of Cardiff and a Master of Science in infection prevention and control from the University of Dundee. He is an honorary lecturer at Cardiff University, where he supervises both PhD and post-doctoral research, focusing on areas including environmental contamination, microbial biofilm formation and antimicrobial surfaces.  

The last session of the day will be breakout rooms where attendees will have the opportunity to meet others, discuss current workforce challenges and share best practice with the aim on safely getting back to (where possible) to a pre-pandemic norm. We look forward to meeting everyone who will be journeying up, down or across to Hemel Hempstead to what will be a fantastic and thought-provoking event.

How to attend

This forum is a member only event open to National/Organisation IPC Leads and Hospital IPC Leads or Link nurses. To sign up to the IPC Forum please contact our team using the button below with your name, the names of colleagues who will be attending, and any dietary requirements by Friday 30th June.