In the workplace, it is found that many activities can lead to transmission of infections like shaking of hands, airborne or droplet born transmissions. The people are suggested to wash hands, disinfect the surfaces, and keep them clean, isolate the hazard, follow infection control policies and procedures, and use sterile equipment to maintain personal hygiene. These are kept under control by implementing and monitoring infection control policies and procedures to create a safe and healthy workplace environment. This report is aimed to achieve a safe healthy workplace environment by approaching implementing infection control policies with improved procedures into work practices and getting feedback to improve the monitoring. The intended outcome is to control the spread of infections in the workplace and encourage the employee to report infection risks. This implementation of infection control policies and procedures ensures that the clients, employees, and families are not exposed to infections and diseases.
Currently, the policies and procedures in the workplace for infection control are routine environmental cleaning, use of the aseptic non-touch technique (ANTT), and encouraging hand hygiene with monitoring of the work procedures. These have the following strengths: control infection risks, ensure compliance, and keep the workplace clean. The recommendation can be monitoring of sterilization processes by nurses, doctors, and cleaning staff (Jeanes et al., 2020).
The information on the approach to infection control is maintained and updated by maintaining the guidelines and standards along with their timely regulation. Its strengths include documented and specifically defined information, promoting the health care system development, and a positive impact on the quality of services. A recommendation could be interaction among health care individuals to spread awareness, strictly informing the individuals who do not follow guidelines or standards and get feedback on lacking points to update the same.
The approaches for implementing infection control into work practices are 1. Conducting awareness programs among the health care professionals and co-workers; 2. Use of displayable posters and templates to spread information among people. These encourage people to adopt healthy practices, follow infection control education, and maintain a healthy workplace. However, a recommendation could be then the involvement of every patient/employee, their families, and cleaning staff as well.
The information on infection control is monitored and improved by surveillance, educating, and interacting with the staff and by documenting and analyzing the data. An infection control committee can also be framed that includes members from different disciplines of health care. These can be quality assurance personnel, nursing staff, risk management personnel, physicians, and infection control, practitioners. Their goal is to plan, monitor, educate, and update the general infection control policy and control specific infection issues. The feedback is collected by interacting at the workplace with employees, cleaning staff, patients, and every other individual of the workplace or through online-offline questionnaires, surveys, and interviews. The data collected is in the form of regular written information about infections among workers/employees of the workplace or responses/feedback from surveys or interviews, which is then analyzed, and measures are implemented. For example, if the committee collects information about an increased number of infections among patients with whooping cough, acute rash illness, or vomiting then laboratory results will be checked daily with strict surveillance and find the lacking points. In such cases, usually maintained of a septic environment is not proper resulting in infection development. So the cleaning staff, nurses, employees, or other workers are informed to follow the recommended guidelines and aseptic conditions resulting in improved and good health of patients/employees in the workplace. The aseptic conditions that are monitored and improved include the use of sterilized equipment, gloves, masks, disinfection of surfaces, and a clean environment.
It is learned that infection at the workplace can spread through various pathways like airborne, direct transmission, or others. Maintenance of proper infection control procedures can help in reducing the same to a great extent. Moreover, sharing and updating information through surveys or interviews can help in tracking and monitoring the weakness that affects the workplace healthy environment.
To maintain and ensure correct completion and finalization of infection control in the workplace the steps/actions taken are: listening to the employee's suggestion, creating a SMART action plan, providing feedback to colleagues, monitoring of the results and meet periodically to discuss progress, data collection and monitoring pre- and post- changes. Moreover, recording of completion of in-service and other education on practice changes, actions are documented in relevant agendas, meeting minutes and/or reports of relevant committees, and updating on quality improvements. Quality improvement programs provide a means by which processes and systems can be continuously monitored, evaluated, and improved.
In the workplace, it is found that many activities can lead to transmission of infections like shaking of hands, airborne or droplet born transmissions. The people are suggested and encouraged to wash hands, disinfect the surfaces, and keep them clean, isolate the hazard, follow infection control policies and procedures, and use sterile equipment to maintain personal hygiene. These are kept under control by providing training to implement and monitor infection control policies and procedures to create a safe and healthy workplace environment. This project report is aimed to train the staff regarding hand hygiene, surface cleaning, waste management, and many others. The intended outcome is to monitor the success of the training and report on its outcome.
The role of nurses or health care workers is to educate others on the prevention and control of diseases and infections. This can be done by providing training, awareness programs, or annual/monthly meeting to spread and share the importance of infection control procedures. The training was conducted in the workplace with a batch of 10 staff members. They were given sessions on infection control by making them aware of: hand hygiene and hand care – using soaps or alcohol-based hand rub and washing hands according to the World Health Organization (WHO) hand were guidelines, surface cleaning – using phenol or other disinfectants. The use of personal protective equipment – its use prevent hazard spreading to another individual, it protects the workers’ body from impacts/hazards. The components of PPE are multiprotocol datagrams encapsulation, linked control protocol that helps in the establishment and testing of data-link connection, and a family of network control protocols for configuring and establishing different network-layer protocols.
The waste management or handling of potentially infectious material – no handling of hazardous wastes until they are treated before disposal, educating the waste handlers, educating the staff about the potentially hazardous labels like explosive, inflammable, reactive, and many others, and following the WHO health-care waste management planning, hazard identification and risk assessment and management – informing the trainees about the importance of early hazard or risk identification, controlling the risks, transforming the risks and avoiding the risks. Such sessions with the trainees enable them to implement as well as monitor infection prevention and control policy and procedures at individual levels, thereby resulting in a healthy workplace in health care.
It was found that the trainee followed the information shared with them during training sessions about infection control, risk management, and other aspects. They were monitored by cross-questioning after the training, daily assessments of their attitude in following the infection control procedures, strict surveillance, assessing their responses during interviews, and the outcomes were helpful for a health care workplace as a trained staff reduces the chances of infection. The outcomes include proper use of disinfectants regularly, the use of PPE kits, sterilizing the work surfaces, disposal of sterilized wastes only, and fewer chances of infections among employees/patients in the workplace. As a result of this training, the staff started accurately maintaining the records of infection control risks and incidents to report and investigate potential breaches of infection control in line with organizational procedures. The training in work procedures is provided as required to maintain infection control standards and identify any inadequacies in work procedures and infection control measures, and ensure that they are corrected or reported to designated personnel. The outcomes from such training include well informed and aware staff that establishes a healthy workplace environment and reduces the spread of infections.
The WHO hand wash guidelines recommended stated: clean hands regularly, wash hands with soap or alcohol-based hand wash, and depicted how hand movements are to be done while washing hands. The WHO health care waste management planning objective is to: inform workers for proper and safe waste disposal, segregation, and transport. The health care equipment like glass bottles or glass slides can be recycled or reused after they are autoclaved and sterilized. Before the disposal, the waste should be treated with suitable technologies in workplaces by opting for the best and cost-effective option for treatment. This ensures staff safety, workplace safety, and environmental safety as well. Hospital infection control plans or programs help the workers/employees or patients to prevent the spread of infections. This also helps in monitoring practices, identify risks, and improving policies accordingly.
WHO. (2020). Fundamentals of health-care waste management. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/medicalwaste/034to057.pdf?ua=1
WHO. (2020). WHO guidelines on hand hygiene in health care: A Summary. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/gpsc/5may/tools/who_guidelines-handhygiene_summary.pdf
Jeanes, A., Coen, P. G., Drey, N. S., & Gould, D. J. (2020). Moving beyond hand hygiene monitoring as a marker of infection prevention performance: Development of a tailored infection control continuous quality improvement tool. American journal of infection control, 48(1), 68-76. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2019.06.014
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