Infection Control is a quality standard and is essential for the well-being and safety of patients, staff and visitors.
To demonstrate accountability for quality in the area of infection control, Labrador-Grenfell Health has structured its program to achieve:
- Reduction in the incidence and risk of preventable healthcare associated infection
- Prevention of infection transmission within health care facilities and the community
- Formation of a framework that facilitates the effective use of resources to deliver health care in a safe, cost effective and evidence based manner.
These goals/objectives are reflected in the organizations infection control program. Strategies to achieve these objectives are outlined in the organizations infection control policy and procedures.
Everyone has a role to play, so we consider patients, families and staff when developing policies, procedures and plans to prevent the spread of infection. Here is what you can do:
Your Role in Infection Control
1. Visit only if you feel well
If you have a cough, sore throat, fever, vomiting or diarrhea or are just not feeling, it is best that you not come to the hospital to visit. There is a risk that you could make those around you sick. Instead of coming to the hospital, you can call on the telephone. A telephone is available in each client room.
Protect Yourself From Others. Remember to Clean, Cover, Contain
2. Clean your hands
Cleaning your hands regularly is the best way to prevent the spread of germs that cause infection. Unless your hands look dirty, you can clean them easily and effectively using the hand sanitizer provided in the halls, in patient rooms, and several other spots throughout the hospital.
How to Sanitize Your Hands
How to Wash Your Hands
3. Stay Up-to-Date with Vaccines
Disease prevention is key to staying healthy. It is always better to prevent a disease than to treat it. Vaccines can protect both the people who receive them and those with whom they come in contact. Vaccines are responsible for the control of many infectious diseases that were once common in this country and around the world, including polio, measles, diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), rubella (German measles), mumps, tetanus, and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib). Over the years vaccines have prevented countless cases of infectious diseases and saved millions of lives.
We Care...Our Role in Infection Control
All hospital staff treating patients are to clean their hands before and after contact with every patient. It's okay to ask your healthcare provider to wash their hands before they treat you.
Hand hygiene audit observations are conducted monthly on the four essential moments of hand hygiene.
Hand Hygiene results are shared with front line staff and leadership. Auditing hand hygiene provides a benchmark for improvement and helps the infection control staff identify the most appropriate education, training and promotion required.
Hand Hygiene Facts and Compliance Rates 2011-16
Your 4 Moments for Hand Hygiene
Help Prevent Antibiotic Resistant Organisms (AROs)
Antibiotic resistance happens whem bacteria change to protect themselves from an antibiotic. They are then no longer sensitive to that antibiotic. When this happens, antibiotics that previously would have killed the bacteria, no longer work. The more antibiotics are used, the more chances bacteria have to become resistant to them.
You can prevent antibiotic resistance by:
- Understanding that most people don't need antibiotics for colds and flu because they are caused by viruses
- Taking the right dose of your antibiotic at the right time, as prescribed by your doctor
- Taking your antibiotics for as long as your doctor tells you to
- Do not use antibacterial soap or other antibacterial cleaners at home
- Do not save antibiotics for the next illness. Discard any leftover medication once the prescribed course of treatment is completed.
- Do not ask for antibiotics when your doctor thinks you do not need them. Remember antibiotics have side effects. Using antibiotics when they are not helpful or needed makes the "superbug" problem worse
- Prevent infections by practicing good hand hygiene and getting recommended vaccines.
If you are being admitted to our hospital, hospital staff will ask you if you have been told you have and antibiotic resistant organisms such as Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) or Vancomycin Resistant enterococcus (VRE).
The admitting nurse will ask you a few questions about recent hospital stays and whether you have tested positive for MRSA or VRE.
There are times when our staff takes extra precautions when a patient has tested positive. Staff will wear a gown and gloves when providing direct patient care to prevent the spread of bacteria. You and your family may be asked to do the same.