Infection Prevention and Control For Healthcare Assistant

1854 words (7 pages) Essay in Health

23/09/19 Health Reference this

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INFECTION PREVENTIOn AND CONTROL

Learners Record 

Table of Contents

Introduction……………………………………………………………………………………2

Section One:

Staff Issues…………………………………………………………………………………….3

Travel Associated Infections……………………………………………………………….….3

Reflection on the local control measures for infection, prevention and control………………3

Section Two:

Reflection on Blood Borne Virus’s ………………………………………………………….…4

The main blood borne viral diseases …………………………………………………………..4

 Precautions used to prevent the spread of blood borne viruses……………………………….4

Section Three:

Reflection on the role of antibiotics and the importance of correct and safe antibiotic uses …5

Antibiotic resistance………………………………………………………………………..….5

Reflection on a situation from my work placement where antibiotic therapy was used………5

 

Conclusion………………………………………………………………………………….…6

Bibliography…………………………………………………………………………………..6

Webography…………………………………………………………………………………..6

Introduction

As part of the QQI Major Award Level 5 in Healthcare Support the trainee healthcare assistant (HCA) is required to reflect on the local control measures for infection, prevention and control (IPC). The learner will make reference to the local infection control team and the policies in relation to dress code, staff health and travel associated infections. I will also refer to a situation where as part of a team I was involved in dealing with a client who presented with a known infection and how the team dealt with the situation. I will also identify the main blood borne viruses which pose a threat and the methods used to prevent the spread of infection. I will refer to the viruses by name and discuss hazards that may have posed a risk and explain how these hazards were controlled and prevented. I will also reflect on the role of antibiotics and the importance of correct and safe use to avoid antibiotic resistance. In my response I will reflect on a situation where antibiotic therapy was used, how I felt about its use, how effective it was and any concerns I might have had about its usage. The methodology used in this assignment is independent research using the Internet and the text book Healthcare Support: A Textbook for Healthcare Assistants along with Tutor inputs and peer education.

Section One

Preventing healthcare associated infections (HCAI) is one of the main challenges for hospitals and nursing homes today, an example of an HCAI is methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus more commonly known as MRSA. The Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) Infection Prevention and Control Team (IPCT) play a vital role in stemming the outbreak of infection by providing training, and information on how to best manage an outbreak. The role of the IPCT is to promote the best infection prevention and control practice in order to ensure the delivery of a quality service for staff, patients and visitors by providing expert advice to hospitals and nursing homes about infected patients and other infection control issues that may arise. Infection prevention and control nurses are available Monday to Friday 7:30 to 4:30 and a Consultant Microbiologist on call 24 hours a day seven days a week. [Tuh.ie] (Mc Guill, U. 2018 Tutor Handout) (Healthcare Support: A Textbook for Healthcare Assistants)

 

 

 

Work Practice: Policy & Procedures regarding IPC

My work placement is in a private nursing home in Co. Dublin. It takes the matter of infection prevention and control very seriously. For example, on my first week I was asked to become familiar with all the facilities policy and procedures including their policy regarding infection prevention and control.

 

Work Practice: Staff Issues & Dress Code

In my work placement all staff must wear short or turned up sleeves (bare below the elbow principle) and each member of staff is appropriately dressed, and all personal protective equipment (PPE) is readily available to minimise the potential for any staff to suffer damage to their own clothing or the spread of infection.Staff must change uniform/clothes immediately when they become visibly contaminated. Finger nails should be kept short, smooth, clean and free of nail varnish and false nails and staff should maintain a high level of personal hygiene.Uniform/ clothing should not be regarded as PPE. Good hand hygiene is one of the single most effective way to stop/reduce the risk of cross contamination and hand hygiene must be performed after removing PPE. There are three types of hand hygiene Social Hand Hygiene, Antiseptic Hand Hygiene, and Surgical Hand Hygiene the one used will be determined by the risk of infection. Designated changing facilities to change into a clean uniform/ clothing each day and staff wash uniforms/clothes at the hottest temperature for the fabric.All healthcare workers should be offered hepatitis B vaccine and seasonal influenza vaccination are kept up-to-date.Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) vaccine should be offered if not already immunised.

Travel Associated Infection

Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease caused by a type of bacteria that usually affects the lungs, symptoms of TB include a cough that last three weeks or longer, pain in the chest, chills, coughing up blood or sputum, weakness / tiredness, weight loss, lack of appetite, fever, and sweating at night. It has an incubation period that will vary between two and twelve weeks. Travelers who go to areas of Africa, Asia, and parts of Central and South America are at greatest risk of contracting TB, but it is on the rise in Ireland. TB is spread from one person to another either by direct or indirect contact or through microscopic droplets released into the air like coughs, sneezes, saliva, and contaminated blood. [nc.cdc.gov]

 

Ebola virus disease (EVD) was declared in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in West Africa. Symptoms of EVD include fever, rash, pharyngitis (inflammation of the pharynx), conjunctivitis, weight loss, headache, and fatigue. EVD has an incubation period of between three and eight days. EVD is spread through direct and indirect contact with body fluids, mucous membranes, contaminated surfaces and materials. [medscape.com]

 

Infections in travellers returning from an international destinations are a common problem for the healthcare industry. With the rise of travel to international destinations in recent years people have a higher chance of contracting an exotic infection like malaria, dengue fever, and typhoid fever.        

 

Section Two

Exposure to blood borne pathogens or blood borne infection (BBI) poses a serious risk to health care workers. I will review the risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) of which there are two categories type one and two, also the hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections in nursing homes and hospitals and also discuss current methods for preventing the spread of the forenamed pathogens. To minimize the risk of blood borne pathogen transmission from health care workers to patients, staff and visitors all staff should adhere to standard precautions, including the appropriate use of the seven step hand washing technique, protective barriers like gloves and aprons, and care in the disposal of needles, razors, and other sharp instruments into a sharps disposal container. Care must be taken in the segregation and disposal of contaminated soiled linen and the use of alginate bags where applicable. The types of transmission of these pathogens are numerous and it is of vital importance that standard based precautions be used regardless of suspected or confirmed infection status. Transmission based precautions are used with residents with documented or suspected infection of a highly transmittable pathogen. Below is an image of the chain of infection and its mode of entry to infect a susceptible host.

(Mc Guill, U. 2018 Tutor Handout)

[ncbi.nlm.nih.gov]

                                                                                                                      [Google Image]

Section Three   

Antibiotics namely penicillin are powerful medicines that fight certain infections, discovered by Alexander Fleming in September 1928, it was also Fleming who predicted the rise of antibiotic resistant bacteria almost 70 years ago. “Then there is the danger that the ignorant man may easily under-dose himself and by exposing his microbes to non-lethal quantities of the drug, make them resistant.”

Alexander Fleming Nobel Prize acceptance speech in 1945

Antibiotics such as penicillin one of the several types of antibiotics kills or slows down the growth of bacteria but they cannot fight against viral infections like a common cold or flu. People will usually take antibiotic prescription by mouth but in some circumstances doctors can administer them by injection or applied directly to the infection, and the antibiotic will start combating the infection within the first few hours of the treatment. It is recommended that the course of antibiotic treatment is finished so bacteria will not become resistant to future treatments. Reactions to antibiotics are very serious and can be fatal (anaphylactic shock) and some side effects might include the swelling of the tongue and face which in turn will cause difficulty with breathing, or an outbreak of a rash, diarrhoea, nausea, and vomiting. Although I did not experience any residents taking antibiotics, I do believe the time for antibiotic treatment is over with growing numbers of bacteria’s becoming resistant to treatments other methods should be explored like gene editing techniques design them to target a single bacterial species.

[Medicalnewstoday.com]

Conclusion

Infection Prevention and Control will be extremely important to a learner training to be a Healthcare Assistant (HCA) by providing information, techniques, policies and procedures in a workplace environment to help stop the spread of infection .This assignment has touched on some of the infections a HCA will be faced with, and the control measures used to nullify the risk associated with the mentioned hazards.

Bibliography

Healthcare Support: A Textbook for Healthcare Assistants

Webography

Medicalnewstoday.com accessed 8/11/18

Medscape.com accessed 12/11/18

Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov accessed 10/11/18

Nc.cdc.gov accessed 9/11/18

Tuh.ie accessed 9/11/18

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