LESSON 2: Medical asepsis
2-5. PROCEDURE FOR APPLYING MEDICAL ASEPSIS
Hospital-acquired (nosocomial) infections and cross infections (infections that are transmitted between individuals with different pathogens) show the need of applying basic principles of medical asepsis. The following steps outline the basic procedures used in applying medical asepsis.
a. Perform Patient Care Handwash. Follow previous instruction on patient care handwash. The patient care handwash is the most important step in preventing and controlling infection. There may be times when you do not have the materials or the time to do a thorough handwash; however, always wash your hands and clean your fingernails if time permits.
b. Disinfect Materials as Required. Disinfecting means cleaning objects to remove most organisms. Follow directions explicitly where chemical agents are used.
c. Maintain Clean Patient Care Environment.
d. Use Clean and Dirty Utility Rooms. Clean and dirty articles are not stored in the same place in order to prevent contamination. Clean rooms are used to store clean, unused equipment. Dirty rooms are rooms used to store contaminated items such as used linen, trash, contaminated equipment, dirty dietary trays, and basic laboratory tests.
e. Store and Handle Linen Properly.
f. Store and Handle Equipment and Supplies Properly.
g. Dispose of Waste Materials.
h. Follow Specific Isolation Techniques for Patients with Communicable Diseases. See Lesson 5 of this subcourse for instruction on isolation techniques. For a brief description of some selected communicable diseases along with pertinent points in health care, see FM 8-33, Control of Communicable Diseases in Man, an official report of the American Public Health Association.
i. Other Considerations.
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