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Reducing HCAIs
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TOPIC: Are Staff as important as patients?

Are Staff as important as patients? 1 month, 1 week ago #1

Are we doing all we can to protect healthcare staff at work from infection?
Health and Safety Law states according to the Health and Safety Executive states that “all workers have a right to work in places where risks to their health and safety are properly controlled”.

Figures show that 1.4 million staff in England were absent from work at the NHS for a combined 15.56 million days between 2011 and 2012. As this is nearly 3 times the average of the UK workforce what is the problem?

With the Department of Health calculating the NHS could save £555million a year if staff sickness rates were reduced by a third.

What can or is being done to at least control staff getting Hospital Acquired Infections at work?

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 6 days ago #2

In terms of protecting staff from HCAIs, there are several ways in which we address this, however these are also used to reduce IC risks to patients:

· Mandatory Staff training as well as Ad Hoc on Infection Prevention and Control

· Having systems and policies in place to address all aspects of IPC. These include, standard precautions; MRSA; C Dificile; Sharps; Waste management; Outbreak management, CJD.

· Auditing IC processes including hand hygiene, and the clinical environment and providing prompt feedback to staff.

· Using the ‘Five moments of Hand hygiene’ by WHO to guide HH practices.

· Using needle free devices, where possible.

· Having an Infection Prevention and Control Lead in post, together with an Infection control Committee and an IC Link Team to support IPC.

· IC Surveillance

The above are not an exhaustive list of things we do to reduce risks to staff.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 4 days ago #3

Regarding the comment about HCW infections, i feel it has not been given as much importance as been given to patient.
Up do date vaccination and repeated staff awareness session to reemphasize the importance of preventive methods should be a part of routine trust activities to reduce infections. Not only the doctors and nurses should be included in these kind of activities but other staff like House keeping staff should also be included, as they are vulnerable to be subject to incidents like Needle prick.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #4

Speaking of the health system is more than crucial to consider the medical staff as potential risk for the safety of the patients and vice versa.
I firmly believe that we can do more to prevent all the hazards that may occur in the hospital, in terms of infection control or the staff safety. Some ways to achieve that aim are:

The in-house training of the staff is really important to ameliorate knowledge,either for their health safety or the patient's.
Reconsideration/ review of equipment and medical stuff so we can reduce the risk of contamination in the hospital.
Staff awareness regarding the risk of infection inside the hospital, through regular training, update and bringing up current policies or professional code of conduct.
Development of HEALTH AND SAFETY role inside the working environment through review of duties or redistribution of competencies into more than one role. Also, Health and Safety representative in every unit of the hospital.
Conferences, media, to communicate the issue in public.

I suppose that there are many ways to addresse this issue, but first of all it has to commence from us, individually and as members of a team, subsequently.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #5

All staff should be aware of the importance of hand hygiene and to wear approriate PPE, when needed. Sufficient training should be offered to the clinical staff to ensure that they know the benefits of hand hygiene and the risks of poor infection prevention and control in the hospital environment.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #6


(A)Staff induction for all new staff on Infection Prevention and Control
Infection Prevention and Control Mandatory study days annually for all staff.
Practical sessions on Hand hygiene and Aseptic non-touch technique to sign staff off for competency
Flu vaccine offered to all staff
Mask fit testing sessions for all clinical staff
Personal Protective Equipment available for staff working in the clinical areas.
Source Isolation for patients with infection i:e MRSA and C-difficile.
Policies and procedures in place for staff to follow when nursing patients with infections.
These are some of the things we have in place at my hospital

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #7

The matter of protecting staff in the workplace against nasty infections is hardly taken into account by most of the employers. Healthcare Staff are the nuts and bolts of the whole healthcare system and any risk to them could shake the entire system.

I believe as a doctor, I am always at risk of getting infection be it through contact with patients their breathing, body fluid, tissues etc etc.

Unless there is a proper awareness and measures that could inform policies, the risk will continue to grow larger.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #8

A great deal of sick leave within the NHS is for non-infective reasons such as musculoskeletal back pain. Key infective problems affecting staff include viral URTIs and viral gastroenteritis. I think we should be working to ensure a higher proportion of staff get vaccinated against influenza and that staff are appropriately educated about personal protective equipment, hand hygiene, food hygeine and other components of prevention. For these infections, the same measures put in place to protect other patients will also protect staff.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #9

Uniform - to be washed by the hospital at the correct temperature, this will also ensure staff are changing their uniform regularly and not wearing it to and from work.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #10

In order to prevent and control staff getting Hospital Acquired Infections at work we should encourage flu vaccination. We should reinforce flu vaccination or probably make it mandatory.

We should always apply all Infection control precautions for patients to staff as well.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #11

Yes I do agree that staff are as important as patients . Both the health and well being of staff is paramount when delivering care to patients to ensure a high standard of care in implemented and maintained. The staff must be able to carry out clinical practice in a safe environment that benefits both staff and patients and to minimalize the risk of cross infection.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #12

In response to your question are staff as important as patients the answer in my opinion is yes we are as important but we have differing needs to that of the patient.

We all need to take responsinbility in our health needs i.e washing our hand within the 5 moments of hand hygiene and our patients need that encouragement. Also after toileting offering the patient a chance to phsically wash their hands or use a wet wipe.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #13

I feel that with good education the risk of HCAIs should be very low amongst clinical staff. Staff should not come to work when they are unwell and should be aware of their hospital policy with regards to how long they need to stay off of work if they have an infection. Staff should certainly not be working with any open wounds. We are all responsible for our own health and well-being, and by practicing safely we are not only preventing our patients from harm but ourselves as well.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 3 days ago #14

The focus in all healthcare establishments is predominantly patient focussed but without adequate staff support, patient care will inevitably suffer. To provide optimum patient care, staff need to be motivated, enthusiatic and not overworked to an extent when they become unheathy and worn out. Staff in general are willing and wanting to care for patients as they have been trained to, but the current healthcare system does not support this.
In answer to the topic question, i believe absolutely YES, staff are equally as important as patients.

Re: Are Staff as important as patients? 1 week, 2 days ago #15

In my personal opinion, enforcement is the key to succeed in fight against harms of infection either posed by healthcare staff or outside visitors or patients.

It should be made mandatory for each individual of any title or position, any age, whether a visitor or relative that when getting in and out of a particulary ward, to wash their hands at the entrance of that ward. This is exactly the case in Salford Royal Hospital. They are very strict about implementing infection control measures and that is why it is considered as on of the cleanest hospital in the UK.
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