It is impossible to see germs, but they are all around us. In a nursing home, these germs can spread quickly and cause devastating infections like sepsis, colds, pneumonia, streptococcus, listeriosis and urinary tract infections. Elderly patients have been known to suffer serious and fatal infections that could have been prevented.
Many elderly patients in nursing homes have poor or weak immune systems. In addition, they are all living together in one confined area. This allows germs and infectious diseases to spread quickly from one sick patient to another. In some cases, a cold or flu can rapidly run through a nursing home and have devastating effects on the most vulnerable patients.
Germs thrive in dark, moist places. Simply keeping the environment clean, dry, and bright can make a huge difference. Infections can also be reduced by following infection control and standard precaution procedures.
- All hazardous waste must be handled properly.
- Precautions must be made when handling blood, wound drainage, feces and other bodily fluids.
- Workers must wash their hands before and after every patient contact.
- Gloves must be worn when handling bodily fluids, but never be used more than once, and are not a substitute for hand washing.