- All medical professionals need to choose the right gloves and equipment to prevent infections
When it comes to preventing the spread of infections in a healthcare environment, it is the concerted effort of all individuals (patients, visitors, and healthcare workers) performing the necessary infection management procedures correctly that will make a difference (World Health Organization 2007). It is important to maintain proper hygiene and sanitization in health care industry, and people associated with this industry should use PPE kits for their own safety.
According to the NSW Government’s Infection Prevention and Control Policy, standard protocols are the first line of defense, and healthcare professionals are responsible for enforcing infection prevention measures in their daily work practices. Standard precautions are needed for all patient encounters and patient care practices, including the handling of all body fluids, secretions, excretions, non-intact skin, and mucosal membranes.
Furthermore, regular precautions should be followed, as outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2007 and the NSW Government’s Department of Health in 2017:
- Wearing personal protective clothing, such as medical clothing and gloves, masks, introducing hand hygiene, such as hand wash and hand sanitizer
- Using an aseptic technique
- Sharps and waste management must be done in a controlled manner.
- Cleaning of the atmosphere on a regular basis and health care industry should use proper cleaning chemicals to disinfect their premises.
- Controls for respiratory symptoms because airborne diseases can be spread inside the premises and people working in a health care industry should use medical clothing for their safety.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Selection
Having access to and wearing the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) like medical clothing and gloves may be the difference between your protection and the safety of the patient you are responsible for. Medical masks also became more important during the pandemic. When deciding on the appropriate level of PPE, healthcare workers should think about how they can better protect themselves and teach their patients to do the same.
Individual Risk Reduction Measures and PPE Considerations
- Take Care of Yourself
Ensure that you have received all of the necessary immunizations against vaccine-preventable diseases.
Remember to take precautions depending on transmission as well as normal precautions. To deal with the COVID-19 patients, you need to use special medical clothing and gloves, and you cannot reuse the same.
Understand which types of masks are necessary for various precautions and how to choose the best quality face mask according to your domain. According to WHO, health care workers should use N95 masks during this pandemic period.
Scenarios from the Real World – who needs personal protection equipment
- Surgical Procedures in Dentistry
When conducting gum surgery, a dentist must use medical clothing and gloves and a surgical face mask to avoid exposure to the patient’s blood and saliva, as well as sterile equipment.
- Procedure for Puncture of the Lumbar Spine
All surgical personnel must wear medical clothing and gloves, such as polyisoprene, a surgical gown, and a surgical face mask for optimum protection.
- A stomach ache
When touching a patient with gastroenteritis symptoms, a healthcare worker must use disposable medical clothing and gloves, and they can avoid the transmission of the patient’s bodily fluids.
- Staphylococcus aureus methicillin-resistant (MRSA)
To prevent the spread of infection through direct and indirect contact, healthcare workers who are caring for MRSA-infected patients must wear personal protective equipment that covers their hands and bodies during personal care activities and when handling their linen (National Health and Medical Research Council 2013).
Infectious agents spread by touch (indirect or direct), droplet, or airborne channels, according to the Australian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Infection in Healthcare (National Health and Medical Research Council 2010). Transmission-based safeguards provide an extra layer of security for healthcare staff who are unable to efficiently reduce infectious agents using only standard medical clothing and gloves as precautions.