Infection Control

UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh’s Cystic Fibrosis (CF) Center has established guidelines for controlling the spread of infection in clinic and in the hospital for the protection of our patients. Please review these guidelines below.

For questions or more information, please contact Children’s CF Center at 412-692-5630.

CF Infection Control in Clinic

Hand Hygiene

  • Patients and staff will use appropriate hand washing
  • Hands are to be washed with waterless, alcohol based gel
  • If hands visibly soiled, anti-bacterial soap is to be used
  • Patients are to wash hands after leaving and entering exam room (PFT’S, X-ray, restrooms, etc.)
  • Hand gel dispensers are available in clinic waiting rooms

Patient rooms

  • Patients will be placed in exam rooms as soon as possible
  • All exam and treatment rooms will be wiped down with disinfectant, including all horizontal surfaces
  • Do not allow children to play with medical equipment in the room, such as otoscopes

Gowns and Gloves

  • Staff will wear gowns and gloves when entering patient exam rooms


  • Staff will wear masks when a patient is actively coughing or when contact with secretions is anticipated
  • Masks are to be worn by patients over the age of 2 years in all areas of the hospital and clinic, except for the PFT and exam rooms

Toys/Shared Objects

  • There will be no toys or books in clinic exam rooms
  • Do not allow your child to play with general-use computers and games in the waiting area

What can parents and patients do?

  • Bring toys and books to clinic for your child
  • Nod, wink, smile; do not shake hands with other CF families
  • Review CF pamphlets on guidelines (available in clinic or on Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s website
Contact with other patients with CF should be avoided. We advise against using the cafeteria and gift shop. Maintain a minimum distance of six feet from other patients with CF.

Inpatient Infection Control Guidelines

Hand hygiene 

The most important means of preventing person-to-person transmission of bacteria is good hand hygiene.
  • Use antibacterial soap if hands visibly soiled or gel not available
  • Use hand gel for all other times
  • Wash hands after coughing and entering and leaving room
All staff must comply with hand hygiene guidelines.

Patient rooms

  • Patients with CF should be admitted to a private room whenever possible
  • If a patient with CF is admitted to a semi-private, then the roommate should not have CF, another respiratory illness, or an immune deficiency

Gowns and gloves

  • All staff entering patient rooms will wear gowns and gloves


  • Staff must wear masks when contact with respiratory secretions is anticipated
  • Respiratory therapists will wear masks for all treatments
  • Masks are to be worn by CF patient when leaving patient room
  • Masks should cover both nose and mouth and stay on in all common areas of the hospital

Activity outside hospital room

  • The playroom can be used by only one CF patient at a time. Patients with B.cepacia, MRSA, or multiply resistant Pseudomonas may not use the playroom.
  • Patients should not go to the cafeteria or gift shop and should not congregate at the nursing station. Patients should leave their room only for purposes of tests, procedures, or when going on pass (outside the building).

Contact with other CF patients should be avoided!

  • No contact within six feet of other patients with CF
  • Wink, nod, smile; do not shake hands
  • Patients may not enter the room of another patient with CF

What can parents and patients do?

  • Wash hands after common rooms (PFT, bathrooms, xray)
  • Wash hands after coughing
It is OK to remind health care providers to comply with policy!
Questions? Contact Children's Hospital's infection prevention specialist or the Antonio J. and Janet Palumbo Cystic Fibrosis Center at 412-692-5630.