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Original Thesis

By | July 2013
Page 1 of 31
Chapter I
THE PROBLEM

Introduction

We are always surrounded by bacteria and germs and these can sometimes contribute to the development and spread of infections. Infections can be potentially very harmful so it is important to try and control and prevent the spread of infection, especially in areas such as hospitals where patients are alreadqy ill and therefore susceptible to infection.

Infection prevention and control is the clinical application of microbiology in practice. Infection or disease may be caused by bacteria, fungi, viruses or prions and can result in a wide variety of infections, for example, urinary tract, wound, respiratory, blood, bone and skin infections. Not all infections are transmissible but some such as C. difficile, influenza and norovirus have the potential to spread from one patient to another causing infection with additional significant implications for healthcare organizations/facilities or nursing homes. Understanding how infections occur and how different micro-organisms act and spread is crucial to preventing infections. As nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants, prevention is our primary aim.

Infection prevention and control is an integral component of nursing care delivery in any setting to reduce risks for morbidity and mortality in patients and care givers at all levels. Basic principles of infection prevention are simple and include personal hygiene and hand washing. Nurses share responsibility with other health care personnel for infection risk reduction in patients across entire continuum of care and play vital role in reducing risks for infection through a variety of direct care activities. The health care market place is rapidly changing with far reaching effects on how we as nurses practice our craft. These changes include integrating infection control into daily nursing care both in hospitals and in the growing field of professional nursing in the home.

Prevention and control of nosocomial infection...

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