It is important that everyone involved in the medical field undertakes an infection control and prevention course. Preventing infection is something everyone can do even though it can be at different levels. A nurse at a health facility can play a big role in preventing and controlling infectious diseases.
Although the infection control and prevention course may have different levels, certain elements will be taught across the board. Let us consider those key elements.
Policy Guidelines of Infection Control
There is a set policy that includes minimum guidelines for the prevention and control of infection. This must be taught at every level, whether it is a short certificate training or a Ph.D. The guidelines need to be followed, and so everyone must know and understand them. This makes it easier for them to follow the guidelines.
How Infection is Spread?
In order to control infection, it is necessary to know how it is spread. This may be a wide topic considering that there are different ways infection can be spread. Infection within a medical ward would be spread differently from infection in a laundry room or kitchen.
A common feature though is the microorganisms responsible for causing infection. Everyone needs to learn how they behave and how they are carried around within a medical setting as well as in communities.
The hands may be the biggest vector of infection. People touch different surfaces and pick up microorganisms that cause infection that they can transfer to other individuals. Control and infection training focuses on proper hand hygiene. People are taught how to wash hands effectively, how often to wash their hands as well as how to encourage other people to wash their hands. They also learn to avoid touching possible contaminants like doors.
Understanding Infections Spread by Health Care Personnel
Learning this will help see the need for practices like hand washing as well as other guidelines that are taught within the course. Healthcare personnel account for a significant rate of infections spread so they need to understand these infections and how they can prevent and control them.
One of the ways to control and prevent infection is to disinfect surfaces and equipment. Everyone working within a health care setting has a responsibility to ensure proper disinfection. While the cleaner may do the actual disinfection, the nurse may need to supervise the process and although the nurse may be responsible for disinfecting equipment, the doctor needs to know how to manage equipment that has not been disinfected yet. By disinfecting, infection is significantly controlled.
Use of Personal Protection Equipment
Part of controlling infection involves being safe from infection. To be able to do that, medical staff need to be familiar with personal protective equipment. They should be able to identify them, know what they are used for, and know the right way to use the equipment. They also learn what to do with PPE once they are done with them.
There is a lot more that medical personnel can learn about preventing infection. An organization can determine what is relevant to its staff and then have them take up that particular course. Individuals too can determine what will help their career as well as protect those in their care.