The Principles of Infection Prevention and Control



Everyone involved in providing care should be:
educated about the standard principles of infection prevention and control and trained in hand decontamination, the use of personal protective equipment, and the safe use and disposal of sharps.

Wherever care is delivered, healthcare workers must have available appropriate supplies of:
  * materials for hand decontamination
  * sharps containers
        -     personal protective equipment.

Educate patients and carers about:
  * the benefits of effective hand decontamination
  * the correct techniques and timing of hand decontamination
  * when it is appropriate to use liquid soap and water or hand rub
  * the availability of hand decontamination facilities
  * their role in maintaining standards of healthcare workers' hand decontamination.

Hand decontamination

Hands must be decontaminated in all of the following circumstances:
  * immediately before every episode of direct patient contact or care, including aseptic procedures
  * immediately after every episode of direct patient contact or care
  * immediately after any exposure to body fluids
  * immediately after any other activity or contact with a patient's surroundings that could potentially result in hands becoming contaminated
  * immediately after removal of gloves.

Decontaminate hands preferably with a hand rub (conforming to current British standards),    
except in the following circumstances, when liquid soap and water must be used:
  * when hands are visibly soiled or potentially contaminated with body fluids or in clinical
situations where there is potential for the spread of alcohol-resistant organisms.

Healthcare workers should ensure that their hands can be decontaminated throughout the duration of clinical work by:
  *   being bare below the elbow when delivering direct patient care removing wrist and hand jewellery