Preventing infections should be a mandatory part of any aged care home, seeing that it can lead to so many problems. Many things have to be taken into consideration in order to reduce infections; because they can be spread through the air, food or physical contact. Let us look at some of the things we can do to reduce the spreading of infections among the elderly.
When dealing with the elderly, it is essential to be mindful of the surroundings. Inspecting their healthcre equipment should be the first check, to ensure everything is functioning correctly and in turn helping the elderly resident. If the bathrooms or the kitchens are not cleaned properly, it increases the chances of someone getting an infection. The little also help to make a difference and what you need to do sometimes is look around. Could that area be any cleaner? Are the staff uniforms being appropriately washed? You can ask yourself some of these questions and immediately identify places where improvements can be made.
Practice hand hygiene
Physical contact is one of the main ways in which infections can be spread from person to person. However, practising this type of cleanliness is also an effective way to prevent and reduce the spread of infection. In aged care homes, there is a strict procedure to follow, and it is known as “the five moments for hand hygiene”. It is also advised to use an alcohol rub after washing your hands.
Some people still share the opinion that the elderly are the only ones who can spread infections, and that is certainly not the case. Aa a matter of fact, the staff, also has to remain vigilant and ensure they are correctly vaccinated before engaging with any resident or staff member. Older people are somewhat more vulnerable to infections, so what may seem like a common cold to you might be pneumonia for one of the residents. This is even more reason for the staff to comply with the outlined policies for vaccination. It’s better to be safe and prevent any horrible incidents from occuring in the home.
Know your residents
Everyone has different needs, and given that fact, they will need to be treated accordingly. Let us say one of the patients came in with a respiratory condition. A member of staff will ensure that in addition to gloves, a face mask is also a part of their routine when dealing with that particular person. Keeping accurate records of each resident is also a plus because it gives you an idea of what you may encounter beforehand so that you can be prepared.
Safe injection practices
This is a common feature of most healthcare facilities and it is used to prevent and treat a host of illnesses. Keeping that in mind, it should be noted that unsafe practices of this nature can put members of staff in jeopardy and pose a serious threat to the residents. While some people may think it is okay to ignore procedure and reuse syringes, these are definite red flags and should not be done under any circumstance. Before administering any injections, take the time to inspect the vial, use aseptic techniques and follow the necessary guidelines.
By sticking to the ground rules listed above, keeping the risk of infections to a minimum should not be a difficult task. Take the time to educate yourself and others about how ignorance can be detrimental, especially when working with the elderly. For your safety and the safety of others, ensure that each and every injection is being done by the book.