Universal Precautions

 

SINCE MEDICAL HISTORY AND EXAMINATION CANNOT RELIABLY IDENTIFY ALL PATIENTS INFECTED WITH BLOOD BORNE PATHOGENS, BLOOD AND BODY FLUID, UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS SHALL BE USED FOR ALL PATIENTS.

 

  1. Universal blood and body fluid precautions (the use of barriers) shall be used for all patients if contact with blood or body fluids is possible regardless of whether a diagnosis is known. EMS providers are responsible to use the personal protective equipment (PPE) made available by their employer.
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  3. PPE should be removed immediately after patient contact to avoid contamination of other surfaces (i.e. – steering wheel, door handles, clip boards, pens, etc.)
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  5. Personnel with patient contact responsibilities, who have any open lesions, cuts, or skin conditions such as eczema, should report such conditions to management personnel prior to beginning their scheduled shift. Management may consult the Medical Director or Occupational Health physician when appropriate.
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  7. Personnel should have been assessed for the need for immunization against the Hepatitis B Virus.
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  9. Personnel will, upon hire and annually thereafter receive education and training pertaining to infection control guidelines to be observed for their service.
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  11. Body fluids include: saliva, sputum, gastric secretions, urine, feces, CSF, breast milk, serosanguineous fluid, semen, or any drainage.
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  13. Immediately after use, sharps will be disposed of in provided biohazard, puncture resistant containers. Containers will be replaced when 3/4 full. Used needles shall not be sheared, bent, broken, recapped, or resheathed by hand. Used needles shall not be removed from disposable syringes. Do not lay or stick used needles in seat cushions.
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  15. Exposure to Blood and/or Body fluids:
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    1. Personnel sustaining an exposure (needle stick, mucous membrane, or skin contact) to blood and/or body fluids shall immediately cleanse the contaminated area with soap and water. If these are not immediately available, waterless hand cleaner shall be used.
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    3. In cases of splattering of blood or body fluids to the eyes and/or mouth, flush with copious amounts of water for 15 minutes.
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    5. Notify the employee’s appropriate leadership personnel.
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    7. Complete the Indiana State Board of Health REPORT OF BLOOD OR BODY FLUID EXPOSURE form and leave a copy of this at the receiving facility with any other paperwork left following patient care. Remaining copies shall be turned over to Management per the Department policy. This form must be filled out completely and accurately within twenty-four (24) hours.

     

  17. Hand washing is the most important infection control procedure. EMS providers should wash their hands:
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    1. after removing PPE
    2. after each patient contact
    3. after handling potentially infectious material
    4. after cleaning/decontaminating equipment
    5. after using the restroom
    6. before eating or preparing food