Brazil is the largest country in Latin America, with a population of 146 million people. The socioeconomic development and the distribution of population and health services varies widely within the country. There are approximately 1.2 million hospital admissions per month, 80% of them paid by a government healthcare program that follows the diagnosis-related groups (DRGs) model. The Ministry of Health has been trying to establish a nationwide nosocomial infection control program since 1983. Most Brazilian hospitals now have some kind of infection control activity, but only a few of them have complete programs. Infrastructural deficiencies, the scarcity of well-trained healthcare workers, and the widespread occurrence of multiresistant Staphylococcus aureus and gram-negative bacteria are some of the challenges faced by Brazilian hospitals in the control of nosocomial infection.