The COVID-19 pandemic is a stressful time for everyone, especially healthcare professionals who are working on the frontlines and are at the maximum risk of getting infected by it. For this reason, the World Health Organization has emphasized on providing a proper health care system to physicians and other health professionals so that they can protect themselves and others around them.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has shared 8 important tips that must be followed to prevent health care experts from getting infected.
1) Minimize Exposure Chances:
Make sure that all the required practices are in place to cut down the exposure of 2019-nCoV and the other respiratory pathogens. All the measures must be put in place before the patient’s arrival and remain there throughout the affected patient’s time in the health care unit.
2) Take All the Necessary Precautions
Assume that every person is infected with a pathogen that can be transmitted in the health care unit. It is of utmost importance to properly don and doff the personal protection equipment. All the health care professionals must follow the necessary precautions and wear protective equipment including eye protection when entering the room of a COVID-19 affected or suspected patient.
- Monitor and Manage Visitors Movement
A proper plan for monitoring, managing, and training visitors should be in place. Physicians and all the other health care professionals must restrict visitors from entering the room of the known and suspected COVID-19 patients. Encourage the visitors to use video-call apps on their smartphones, tablets or computers to interact with their loved ones.
4) Install Engineering Controls
Make sure all the engineering controls such as physical barriers or partitions are installed to decrease or even eliminate the infection risk. This helps to create the triage areas and shield all the health professionals and patients from the COVID-19 affected/suspected patients.
5) Managing the Affected Health Professionals
A proper plan must be in place for doctors and all the other health professionals who are infected or exposed to the COVID-19 virus. The plan must be shared with the public health authorities for further guidance. The plan must include a sick leave policy for the COVID-19 affected physicians etc. which is flexible and consistent with the guidance of public health.
6) Educate and Train Every Health Care Professional
Every health care professional must be educated and trained regarding the transmission of infectious agents before caring for a patient. All health professionals must be medically fit, cleared, trained and tested to use respiratory protection devices when required. Elite Medical Training offers the required training and the real world emergency certification for all health professionals to encounter COVID-19 pandemic in the safest possible way!
7) Controlling Environmental Infection
Keep the healthcare organization environment clean from all infections. Always use standard medical equipment for patient care. Follow manufacturer’s instructions and facility policies to clean, sterilize and disinfect all the non disposable and non dedicated medical equipment. You can find more information in the CDC guidelines for environmental infection control.
8) Actively Report to Public Health Authorities
Report actively to the appropriate members of the infection control team regarding the suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients. Assign specific persons within the healthcare organization to communicate with the public health officials and health professionals.