ECDC welcomes WHO’s Global Guidelines for the Prevention of Surgical Site Infections

ECDC comment

​Today, the World Health Organization publishes its Global Guidelines for the Prevention of Surgical Site Infections, which include a list of recommendations prepared by top leading experts and based on a review of the latest evidence in the area.

The recommendations are designed to address the burden of healthcare-associated infections on healthcare systems and on patients undergoing surgery.

The guidelines include a total of 29 recommendations for the prevention of surgical site infections: 13 address the period before the start of the surgical procedure, and 16 address the surgical procedure itself and the period following the surgical procedure. They range from simple precautions such as ensuring that patients bathe or shower before surgery and the best way for surgical teams to clean their hands, to guidance on when to use antibiotics to prevent surgical site infections, and what antiseptics to use before incision.

ECDC welcomes these guidelines and highlights the importance of initiatives to decrease the burden of healthcare-associated infections not only at EU level, but also globally.

Read the guidelines:

WHO’s Global Guidelines for the Prevention of Surgical Site Infections

More information:

ECDC annual epidemiological report onsurveillance of surgical site infections in Europe​ECDC directory of online resources for prevention and control of antimicrobial resistance and healthcare-associated infections: