Chapter 1. Infection Control

1.1 Introduction

In healthcare, the use of effective and safe infection prevention and control practices is everyone’s responsibility. Infection prevention and control guidelines are mandated in hospitals to protect patients, healthcare personnel, and families from the transmission of organisms that cause infections. This chapter will review the principles of infection prevention and control practices, and the use of additional precautions and personal protective equipment to control and prevent the spread of infection in acute healthcare settings. The chapter also will explore surgical asepsis, the principles of sterile technique, and procedures related to sterile technique in the operating room and during invasive procedures.

Learning Outcomes

  • Define infection prevention and control practices.
  • Explain what is meant by chain of infection.
  • Describe routine practices for infection prevention and control.
  • Describe what is meant by point of care risk assessment.
  • Differentiate between the three types of additional precautions: contact, airborne, and droplet.
  • Explain how and when to use additional precautions and personal protective equipment (clean gloves, gown, face shield, eye protection, N-95 mask, procedure mask).
  • Define blood or body fluid exposure and the steps to take if exposed.
  • Explain six or more principles of asepsis.
  • Describe when surgical asepsis and sterile technique are used.
  • Demonstrate the following skills: hand hygiene with soap and water, hand hygiene with alcohol based hand rubs (ABHR), preparing a sterile field, application of sterile gloves, and donning and doffing of PPE.


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Clinical Procedures for Safer Patient Care Copyright © 2018 by Thompson Rivers University is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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