Practices and procedures for universal precautions
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Practices and procedures for universal precautions

Christine Perry Senior Nurse Infection Control, United Bristol Healthcare NHS Trust
Jane Barnett Senior Nurse Infection Control, Southmead Health Services NHS Trust, Bristol

Christine Perry and Jane Barnett provide a discussion on the various practice components of universal precautions

In an article in last month’s Emergency Nurse, the need for universal precautions was identified to protect both health care workers (HCWs) and patients from the risk of blood borne virus transmission (Perry and Barnett 1998). Reasons for the adoption of these precautions include: guidance from government departments; health and safety legislation; control of substances hazardous to health (COSHH) regulations; and the fact that some blood borne viruses can be present without an individual exhibiting symptoms or signs of infection. The latter is of importance in an emergency setting where patients’ status and medical history are often not known. The components of universal precautions are given in Table 1. This article provides a discussion on the various practice components of universal precautions.

Emergency Nurse. 6, 7, 24-32. doi: 10.7748/en1998.11.6.7.24.c1247

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