Infection Prevention and Control Policy

The health and well-being of people with CF is the primary concern of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation — it is at the heart of all we do.

To promote the health and safety of people with CF, the Foundation has an infection prevention and control policy for all CF Foundation events, meetings and offices.

The purpose of the policy is to limit the risk of cross-infection between people with CF at Foundation gatherings in both indoor and outdoor settings.

Medical evidence shows that people with cystic fibrosis can spread or get destructive bacteria from others with CF. These bacteria can lead to worse symptoms and speed decline in lung function.

We know that these bacteria can be spread through three ways:

  1. Direct contact like shaking hands, hugging or kissing.
  2. Indirect contact from touching common objects, such as doorknobs or phones.
  3. Droplets that travel through the air, such as those spread when a person coughs or sneezes.

To reduce the risk of cross-infection at events and activities we sponsor, the Foundation recommends the following:

At Indoor Events:

  • Only one person with CF should be present at a CF Foundation-sponsored indoor event, meeting or office. This person will be invited by the event organizer or volunteer leader.

Please note: People with CF and their families should be aware that individuals with CF might choose to attend Foundation events or meetings without notifying event organizers. We strongly discourage this; however, we cannot guarantee that only one person with CF will be present at any indoor Foundation event. For more information, please call us at 1-800-FIGHTCF.

At Outdoor Events:

  • More than one person with CF may attend CF Foundation-sponsored outdoor events or gatherings. People with CF who attend should maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from each other.

Infection Prevention and Control Best Practices

Hand Hygiene:

  • Everyone (people with CF and those who do not have CF) should clean their hands using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand gel that is at least 60% alcohol. If hands are visibly dirty, use soap and water. Hands should be cleaned after coughing, sneezing or blowing the nose, before eating, after going to the bathroom, etc.

  • Everyone should cough/sneeze into a tissue, immediately discard it in a no-touch trash/waste receptacle and immediately clean their hands.

Activities to Avoid:

All people with CF should avoid the following activities with other people with CF to help lower the risk of spreading or getting destructive bacteria. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Shaking hands, hugging or physical contact 
  • Kissing or intimate contact 
  • Riding in the same vehicle or sharing a hotel room 
  • Participating in fitness/exercise class at the same time 
  • Sharing personal items, drinking cups, utensils or respiratory equipment

Additional Resources

  • References for the CF Foundation's Infection Prevention and Control Policy, April 2013 
  • FAQs on IPC 
  • Watch a webcast about the Foundation’s Policy.
  • Learn more about what you can do to help reduce the risk of getting and spreading germs.

back to top 

Updated 12/4/13