Monday, 27 February 2012

10 Guidelines for Universal Precautions

AppId is over the quota
AppId is over the quota

People who work in medical centers, hospitals, clinics, laboratories and other healthcare facilities and in mortuaries are at a constant risk of contracting illnesses and infections from the people they handle. While handling the sick and the ill is a risky job in itself, they also handle human body fluids, some of which may be infected with dangerous and deadly viruses like Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. They are required to handle such body fluids with great care, in order to keep themselves, their colleagues, their loved ones and other patients safe from such health risks.

For all those professionals and workers who are required to work with the sick, human blood, seminal fluids, vaginal fluids, mucous membranes and other body secretions, there exist certain working guidelines that they need to adhere to for safety. These guidelines dictate how to handle the infected fluids, how to store them, how to dispose them and how to handle them in case of accidents and emergencies. One such set of guidelines is the Universal Precautions. It is a set of precautions, framed to protect the handlers from dangerous viruses like Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. There are guidelines to note:

The handlers of the fluids have to wear gloves without fail when touching any body fluid like blood, vaginal secretions, seminal fluids and mucous membranes and other secretions.
Gloves have to be worn in case there are cuts, wounds or breaks on the skin in the area of contact.
Gloves have to be worn if there has to be a contact with urine, vomit, feces, soiled clothes or linen, or used wound dressing.
Goggles, masks and face shields have to be worn wherever splashing or spluttering of blood or body fluids is possible. Gowns and protective gear are also required in such cases.
Take good care to avoid cuts while shaving patients and residents during the preparation for procedure.
Razor blades and other sharp objects have to handled carefully, so as to not injure oneself or the others.
Mouth-to-mouth resuscitation should be done using the resuscitation devices.
In case of open wounds, cuts or bruises on the skin, avoid contact with patients and the sick. Cover wounds before meeting with them.
If there has been a direct contact with blood and body parts, wash the effected body parts immediately with disinfectants. Follow the prescribed washing and disinfecting regime.
Hands have to be washed after removing gloves and after meeting the patients.

Like with bloodborne pathogen training, Universal Precautions are also very important in safeguarding the health of the staff. They prescribe how the healthcare provider or the laboratory assistant is required to work and save himself and others from contracting dangerous viruses. Occupational Safety and Health Administration or the OSHA requires all the healthcare institutions to provide training in Universal Precautions and bloodborne pathogens to all its staff and workers. It is the best to be safe and take precautions than be sorry in case of some unwanted disaster.

For more information, please visit our universal precautions training website.

View the original article here

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