Use Personal Protective Equipment Correctly.
Gloves and other protective equipment only work if they’re used correctly. Naturally, gloves should be worn if you’re performing a sterile procedure, if you’re at risk of bodily fluid exposure, or if you’re caring for a patient during contact precautions.
Wash your hands both before you put the gloves on, and after you remove them. If your gloves are torn or punctured, remove them and wash your hands immediately. Also, make sure your masks and respirators are fitted correctly.
Get Your Shots.
Getting a flu shot might seem like overkill–after all, it’s just a flu. But if you’re working in a healthcare setting, the last thing you want to do is spread influenza inadvertently to a patient with a weakened immune system. It’s definitely a good idea to get an annual flu shot.
Follow The Rules Of Isolation.
Pay attention to isolation precautions, and follow the recommended guidelines. Standard isolation precautions should be used for all patients: washing your hands, safe injection techniques, and safe handling of potentially contaminated surfaces and objects. Respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette are also important for nurses.
Follow Safe Injection Practices.
One needle. One syringe. One patient. Between 1998 and 2009, there were 51 outbreaks of hepatitis B and hepatitis C in US hospitals, outpatient clinics, and other healthcare facilities. This exposed over 75,000 people to these dangerous pathogens, and nearly all of these incidents happened because healthcare workers failed to follow basic injection safety guidelines.
Keep Your Patients’ Rooms And Equipment Clean.
Catheters, open wounds, and surgical sites are a method of entry for potentially dangerous germs. For these patients, a dirty bedrail could turn into a catastrophe. Thorough cleaning is incredibly important. Many common infections that patients acquire in hospitals, like C. differens, are very difficult to kill.
Keeping Yourself and Your Patients Safe
It’s a well-known fact that hospital patients are at risk of picking up secondary infections. MRSA, C. differens, and many other dangerous or deadly pathogens could be lurking almost anywhere. By taking the right precautions, and by following recommended guidelines and procedures very carefully, you and your fellow nurses can help keep your patients safe.