This week is International Infection Prevention Week, where organisations across the world focus on the importance of infection prevention and the role we can all play in protecting the public.
This year’s theme of Vaccines are Everybody’s Business, focuses on how patients, friends, and family can protect public health through vaccinations. Your actions and immunity can keep patients safe from infection and stop the spread of vaccine preventable diseases.
Each year, hundreds of millions of patients around the world are affected by healthcare-associated infections. There are many different germs and infections inside and outside of the healthcare setting, but we can all play our part in breaking the chain of infections. Hand hygiene, cleaning hands at the right times and in the right way, is one of the most important ways to prevent the spread of germs. Other actions you can take include staying up to date on your vaccines (including the flu shot), covering coughs and sneezes and staying home when sick.
Hospital staff also play a key role by following the rules for standard and contact isolation, using personal protective equipment the right way, cleaning and disinfecting the environment, sterilizing medical instruments and equipment, following safe injection practices, and using antibiotics wisely to prevent antibiotic resistance.
You can learn more about vaccine preventable diseases and how to stay safe: www.apic.org/vaccinatenow