Infection Control Essay Sample
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Infection Control Essay Sample
Explain employees’ roles and responsibilities in relation to the prevention and control of infection It is our responsibility as employees to take precautionary measures to prevent and control the spread of infection in the workplace. this involves working safely to protect myself, other staff, visitors and individuals from infections. Some of the legislation and regulations that relate to the control and prevention of infection include the Health and Safety at Work Act (HASAWA), the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) and the Reporting of Injury, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR). It is important as employees that we are aware of these so that we can work safely; at work we have information provided in the health and safety file and COSHH file.
As employees we must ensure we attend all necessary trainings that our employers provide regarding infection control and prevention. If an employee comes across a hazard such as bodily fluids spilt in an area or a staff member not wearing gloves you must report it immediately to a senior staff member and not ignore it as this may cause infection to spread. In the workplace employees need to put these safe ways of working into practice; for example by effective hand washing, not coming into work when you’re not feeling well as you will be putting others at risk, by not wearing jewellery when cooking or supporting service users in other activities as jewellery carries many pathogens, by always wearing protective clothing; as a support worker wearing an apron and gloves for procedures will reduce the spread of infection by preventing infection passing on from me to others and from getting it on my clothes and spreading it onto another person I come into contact with. It is also important that all equipment is cleaned correctly to avoid cross infection this is because infection can also spread from one person to another through instruments, linen and equipment.
The business organization worker has a responsibility under the wellness and prophylactic at ready Act 1974 to take plow of genius`s own health and caoutchouc and others you attention or support including their family, friends and work colleagues.The act requires Carers to :* Take reasonable care for their own guard and that of others.* Cooperate with the employer in respect of Health and recourse matters .Not intentionally damage any Health and safety equipment or materials provided by the employer* Attend training provided by the employer* hire protective equipment provide by the employerIn respect of the legal profession of infection you must think about the prevention and find out for you and others around you. Basic controls are:* Dispose of waste correctly* cleanse hands when appropriate* Keep equipment clean* Remain vigilant and report potential drop hazards* Attend infection control training and keep updated* abide clean PPE I( personal protective equipment) for each person* Maintaining personal hygiene. 1.2 Explain employers’ responsibilities in relation to the prevention and control of infection It is the duty of the employer to provide PPE, equipment, organise training for staff, undertake risk assessment and generally is responsible for the health and safety of staff in the work environment.
Under health and safety law and regulations employers have to provide a safe workplace for all staff and also provide the required PPE and training and information for staff. Informing all staff of infection control policies, procedures and updates will ensure that all staff are being provided with the necessary information to follow safe practices when working whilst adhering to the law. In my workplace we have the infection control policies and procedures, the COSHH file, information posters and updates on any infection outbreaks or risks. Employers must make sure staff attend training and are supervised when working so that infection control guidelines are being adhered to. Employers should make the workplace a safe environment that is safe for work but also for all individuals and visitors. Employers must carry out risk assessments to assess the dangers of certain work activities and then are responsible for putting strategies in place for minimising or eradicating the risk. Employers must provide PPE free of charge and provide training and refresher updates on infection control.
In terms of maintaining a safe environment employers are responsible for providing PPE, cleaning equipment and materials, maintaining equipment and providing suitable areas for food preparation, washing, toileting and disposing of waste.’ 2The Health and Safety Legislation require that employers have a duty of care to protect employee for example:* run a safe workplace* clear out risk assessments to assess the dangers of certain work activities* Provide training to staff* Provide PPE* Ensure regular health and safety checks are undertaken.The employer should have infection prevention control policies and procedures for the staff.The coach will support and advise the Carer in respect of these procedures. To
organisationaland legal responsibilities; responsibilities to self, colleagues, employer, clients, visitors; responsibilities for acting to p
revent spread of infection,
review of practice; differing roles when working in
different contexts; good
personal hygiene; using PPE; safe disposal of waste
and use of reporting
organisationaland legal responsibilities; responsibilities to self, colleagues, employer, clients, visitors; responsibilities for establishing, maintaining and updating procedures, assessing risk, identifying and taking
action on training
needs; knowledge of relevant policies; monitoring/
training staff; providing
PPE and monitoring the work environment.
2.1 Outline current legislation and regulatory body standards which are relevant to the prevention and control of infection ‘ There are laws and legal regulations about infection prevention and control. Most of the legal regulations relating to infection prevention and control come under the Health and Safety at Work Act; this act is about ensuring a safe work place for employers, employees and members of the public by minimising accidents at work. The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations introduced the need for monitoring health and safety and risk assessment; including infection prevention and control. The Food Safety Act was brought in to ensure safe practices for food to avoid contamination and spreading of infection and includes handling, storing and disposal of food.
Legal regulations that come under HASAWA include The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), this is relevant as it is about the prevention and control of pathogens and managing the safe storage and use of hazardous substances. Reporting of Injury, Disease and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) is relevant as it requires that any infection or disease that is work related be recorded and reported.
There are regulatory bodies such as the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and the Food Standards Agency (FSA) that produce standards to guide and inform infection prevention and control practices. The HSE is an independent regulator for work-related health, safety and illness; provide information and advice to reduce risks of accidents occurring in the workplace including the spread of infections. NICE is responsible for providing guidance on the most effective ways to prevent, diagnose and treat disease and ill health. The FSA is responsible for food safety and food hygiene and providing advice on food safety issues
Substances Hazardous to
Health (COSHH) 2002; The Environmental Protection (
Duty of Care)
Regulations 1991; Food Safety Act 1990; Health and
Safety at Work Act
1974; Health Protection Agency Act 2004; The Manage
ment of Health
and Safety at Work (Amendment) Regulations 1994; The Public Health (Control of Diseases) Act 1984; The Public Health (
Regulations 1988 (as updated in 2010); Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences (RIDDOR) 1995; other relevant legislation such as: The Food Safety (General Food Hygiene) Regulation
(Department of Health1995; Hazardous waste regulations 2005) etc. Regulatory body standards:
NICE; Universal Blood and Body Fluid
Precautions; Skills for Health Infection Control core competencies; The Quality Standards for Health and Social Care 2006; other current Government and or Health Department standards and guidelines
2.2 Describe local and organisational policies relevant to the prevention and control of infection All local authorities have infection control policies and procedures that have been developed to protect their local communities. The borough I work in has an Environmental Health Policy that safeguards the community’s right to having clean air, safe and clean water, ensuring all sewerage is managed safely, rubbish and waste disposed of, cleaning and maintenance of areas open to the public. Infection prevention and control teams carry out routine inspections too to different settings to ensure safety. My organisation has policies and procedures on when and how to use protective equipment, cleaning routines to follow, how to maintain clean environments. This is in relation to different areas and activities such as in bathrooms and toilets where body fluids are present, handling laundry that may be contaminated with body fluids, disposing of hazardous waste, preparing, handling, cooking, serving and clearing food. PPE is essential when working with hazardous activities.
There are many systems and procedures that provide ways of preventing and controlling the spread of infection. Receiving regular information updates at work and attending training raises everyone’s awareness about infection prevention and control. There is also information provided through the media and different campaigns are organised to raise awareness amongst the general public about infection prevention and control for example in relation to the swine flu and to the MRSA bug and other superbugs. There are also public health departments that ensure the safety of local communities such as the provision of sewerage systems, clean water, safe waste disposal, the monitoring of pollution and clean air. Environmental health also involves making sure that food outlets meet the required food safety standards and that they are routinely inspected. Training and information is also available for infection control teams.
Health care providers are also responsible for providing systems and procedures for preventing and controlling infection in terms of monitoring any infection outbreaks, providing immunisation programmes and using barrier nursing in care settings to contain and prevent the spread of infection; strict procedures must be followed when providing care to an individual being barrier nursed such as careful removal and disposal of PPE, through hand washing procedures and equipment. In terms of food hygiene, personal hygiene must be observed through effective hand washing, tying hair back, not wearing jewellery and wearing PPE. All kitchen utensils need to be kept clean as do work surfaces. Food needs to be stored correctly, on dif –
ferent shelves in the fridge and different utensils used for different food types and cooked and raw foods. All guidelines must also be followed when cooking food thoroughly, ensuring that food is defrosted correctly, washing hands before serving and eating food 3.1 Describe procedures and systems relevant to the prevention and control of infection Employees’ rolesandresponsibilities: To include: personal, organisationaland legal responsibilities; responsibilities to self, colleagues, employer, clients, visitors; responsibilities for acting to prevent spread of infection, review of practice; differing roles when working in different contexts; good personal hygiene; using PPE; safe disposal of waste and use of reporting procedures.
Standard precautions: hand hygiene (hand washing technique, use of alcohol gels and antiseptics, hand drying, skin care, facilities required); use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE); general cleanliness (personal, environmental, materials, equipment; principles of isolation nursing); safe practice/ following correct procedures; prevention of sharps injury; immunisation (occupational health for staff, general public and individuals); management of outbreaks of infection; food handling; soiled laundry management
Procedures for handling, storage and disposal of waste: sharps, household waste, clinical/hazardous waste, biological spillages; using the correct colour-coded bag or bin Decontamination techniques: low risk, eg floors, furniture, mobility aids; medium risk, eg bedpans, urinals, commodes; high risk, eg instruments used for invasive techniques; importance of cleaning, disinfection and sterilisation, differences between these; organisational policy on decontamination 3.2 Explain the potential impact of an outbreak of infection on the individual and the organisation ‘Individual – Short or long term illness, secondary conditions or further complications, depression, loss of trust in setting, death.Organisation – sanctions, loss of reputation and trust, closure, prosecution.
Environment – distress of staff, individuals and families, unsettled atmosphere though loss of trust, disruption eg through an investigation and inspection or decontamination. The outbreak of infection can be fatal if care is not taken; for instance an outbreak of MRSA that can be resistant to most antibiotics can be fatal. The outbreak of an infection has consequences for individuals, staff and the organisation. It can cause ill health to all concerned and it can also impact emotionally because people that acquire infection relate it to being dirty and some infections may require people to be isolated from others for a period of time. The organisation could lose money if most of the staff are off sick and as they will then need to employ more staff which they will be paying to cover in addition to staff that are off sick. The organisation could also be fined by not complying with the law and in turn this will damage their reputation 4.1 Define the term risk
Risk =Potential danger
The term risk means the likelihood of a hazard or an activity causing harm In the workplace supporting individuals with personal care activities and sharing facilities with others involve coming into contact with bodily fluids which contain pathogens. Cleaning areas such as bathrooms that are dirty and where bodily fluids are present may be more likely to be contaminated with pathogens. Handling laundry that may be dirty or contaminated with bodily fluids can also contain pathogens. Handling of disposing of clinical waste, emptying waste containers and receptacles will also bring you into waste that are contaminated with pathogens. Providing personal care activities that require being close to an individual and dealing with bodily fluids increases the chance of infections spreading. Sometimes support workers may be exposed to high risk situations where the risk of infection spreading is higher such as in an individual’s home where the support worker is supporting with personal care but then also other activities such as handling food and disposing of waste.
4.2 Outline potential risks of infection within the workplace The chain of infection is a series of six steps showing how infection can be spread. This chain of infection will continue in a cyclic way, unless one of the links in the chain is broken. The easiest point at which to break this chain is generally considered to be at the means of transmission. One of the simplest ways to do this is by washing your hands, between every patient and before and after undertaking clinical tasks. By doing this, you can greatly reduce the likelihood of transmitting infection from one place to another.