Proclamation 5525 -- National Infection Control Week, 1986 and 1987
September 15, 1986
By the President of the United States of America
Nosocomial (hospital-associated) infections directly cause more than twenty thousand deaths annually. They contribute indirectly to an additional sixty thousand deaths every year. Approximately one-third of all such infections, according to public health experts, are preventable. While doctors have long been aware of this problem in hospitals, there is new and growing concern about the spread of infection in day care centers. There is no way of reckoning the human cost of these infectious diseases. But we do know that the days lost from school and work as a result of these diseases and the cost of treating them create a great financial burden for the American public.
Scientific evidence has shown that improved health practices, such as proper hand-washing in health care and educational facilities, can significantly reduce the spread of infections, especially staphylococcal infections, which are a threat to hospital patients, and meningitis and diarrheal diseases, which can be contracted in day care centers that neglect proper hygienic practices.
Public Health Service investigators are continuing vital research. They are optimistic that new discoveries will lead to the development of improved techniques for diagnosing, treating, and preventing the spread of infectious diseases.
To focus public and professional attention on the seriousness of nosocomial and other infectious diseases, the Congress, by Public Law 99 - 373, has authorized and requested the President to designate a calendar week in 1986 and 1987 as ``National Infection Control Week'' and to issue a proclamation to that effect.
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the weeks beginning October 19, 1986, and October 18, 1987, as National Infection Control Week. I call upon all Federal, State, and local government agencies, health organizations, communications media, and the people of the United States to observe these weeks with appropriate programs and activities.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of September, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eleventh.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 12:05 p.m., September 16, 1986]