Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 12. Health
Agency 5. Department of Health
Chapter 410. Regulations for the Licensure of Hospitals in Virginia

12VAC5-410-447. Combined obstetric and clean gynecological service; infection control.

A. A hospital may combine obstetric and clean gynecological services. The hospital shall define clean gynecological cases in written hospital policy. A combined obstetric and clean gynecologic service shall be organized under written policies and procedures. The policies and procedures shall be approved by the medical and nursing staff of these services and adopted by the governing body and shall include, but not limited to the following requirements:

1. Cesarean section and obstetrically related surgery, other than vaginal delivery, shall be carried out in designated operating or delivery rooms. Vaginal deliveries may be performed in designated delivery or operating rooms that are used solely for obstetric or clean gynecologic procedures.

2. Clean gynecological cases may be admitted to the postpartum nursing unit of the obstetric service according to procedures determined by the obstetrics and gynecologic staff and the hospital's infection control committee.

3. Only members of the medical staff with approved privileges shall admit and care for patients in the combined service area. These admissions shall be subject to the medical staff bylaws.

4. Hospitals with a combined service shall limit admission to the service to those patients allowed by policies adopted by the obstetric and gynecological medical staff and the hospital's infection control committee.

5. Unoccupied beds shall be reserved daily in a combined service ready for use by obstetric patients.

6. Patients admitted to the combined service may be taken to radiology or other hospital departments for diagnostic procedures, before or after surgery, if it is not evident that these procedures may be hazardous to the patients or to other patients on the combined service.

7. Patients may receive postpartum or immediate postoperative care in the general recovery room prior to being returned to the combined service area if the following conditions prevail:

a. The recovery room or intensive care unit is a separate unit adjacent to or part of the general surgical operating suite or delivery suite; and

b. The recovery room is under the direct supervision of the chairman of the anesthesiology department of the hospital.

In separate obstetric recovery rooms, supervision shall be provided by the obstetrician in charge or by physicians approved by the medical staff of the combined service.

8. Nursing care of all patients shall be supervised by a registered nurse.

9. Nursing care of both obstetrical and gynecological patients may be given by the same nursing personnel.

10. Visitor regulations applicable to visitors of obstetric patients shall also apply to visitors of other patients admitted to the combined service.

B. In addition to the infection control requirements specified in 12VAC5-410-490, the hospital's infection control committee, in cooperation with the obstetric and newborn medical and nursing staff, shall establish written policies and procedures for infection control within the obstetric and newborn services. The policies and procedures shall be adopted by the governing body and shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

1. The establishment of criteria for determining infection-related maternal and newborn morbidity;

2. Written criteria for the isolation or segregation of mothers and newborns, in accordance with Guidelines for Perinatal Care (American Academy of Pediatrics/American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists) and Control of Communicable Diseases in Man (American Public Health Association) to include at least the following categories:

a. Birth prior to admission to the facility;

b. Birth within the facility but prior to admission to the labor and delivery area;

c. Readmission to the service after transfer or discharge;

d. Presence of infection;

e. Elevated temperature; and

f. Presence of rash, diarrhea, or discharging skin lesions;

3. Written policies and procedures for the isolation of patients in accordance with Guidelines for Perinatal Care (AAP/ACOG) and Control of Communicable Diseases in Man (American Public Health Association) including, but not limited to, the following:

a. Ensuring that a physician orders and documents in the patient's medical record the placement of a mother or newborn in isolation;

b. Ensuring that at least one labor room is available for use by a patient requiring isolation;

c. Provisions for the isolation of a mother and newborn together (rooming-in) or separately; and

d. Policies and procedures for assigning nursing personnel to care for patients in isolation;

4. Control of traffic, including personnel and visitors. Policies and procedures shall be established in the event that personnel from other services must work in the obstetric and newborn services or personnel from the obstetric and newborn services must work on other services. Appropriate clothing changes and handwashing shall be required of any individual prior to assuming temporary assignments or substitution from any other area or service in the hospital;

5. Determination of the health status of personnel, and control of personnel with symptoms of communicable infectious disease;

6. Review of cleaning procedures, agents, and schedules in use in the obstetric and newborn services. Incubators or bassinets shall be cleaned with detergent and disinfectant registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency each time a newborn occupying it is discharged or at least every seven days;

7. Techniques of patient care, including handwashing and the use of protective clothing such as gowns, masks, and gloves; and

8. Infection control in the nursery, including but not limited to:

a. Closing of the nursery immediately in the event of an epidemic, as determined by the infection control director in consultation with the medical director and the Department of Health;

b. Assigning a newborn to a clean incubator or bassinet at least every seven days;

c. Using an impervious cover that completely covers the surface of the scale pan if newborns are weighed on a common scale, and changing the cover after each newborn is weighed;

d. Gowning in isolation cases; and

e. Requiring nursery personnel wear clean scrub attire in the nursery when they are handling infants. Appropriate cover garments shall be worn over scrub attire when personnel are holding infants. Personnel shall wash their hands after contact with each patient and upon entering or leaving the nursery.

Statutory Authority

§ 32.1-127 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Former 12VAC5-41-440 E and F derived from VR 355-33-500 § 2.28, eff. July 28, 1993; amended, Virginia Register Volume 11, Issue 8, eff. April 1, 1995; Volume 11, Issue 16, eff. June 1, 1995; Volume 11, Issue 21, eff. August 10, 1995; amended and adopted as 12VAC5-410-447, Virginia Register Volume 21, Issue 6, eff. February 14, 2005.

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