Preventing infection in rehabilitation centres
Nicola Mousley Infection prevention and control nursing officer, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Birmingham, England
Recent military conflicts have provided new challenges for Defence Medical Services, and the specialty of infection prevention and control has not been exempt from these. The mechanisms of injury and the harsh environments in which military injuries are sustained have resulted in unusual infections with multiple resistance to antimicrobial agents. Although the multidisciplinary team faces many issues in the acute phase of the patient’s rehabilitation, it is the continued infection risk to patients that is the biggest challenge for both the infection prevention and control team and the wider multidisciplinary team. Rehabilitation centres may evoke an image of healthy individuals who require little nursing care but, for those attending the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre, this is not always so and staff are often challenged by continuing infection problems. There is also a risk of patients developing new infections as a result of unhealed wounds and the use of invasive devices, such as indwelling catheters, which are essential if patients are to maintain their everyday activities.
Nursing Standard. 29, 38, 43-47. doi: 10.7748/ns.29.38.43.e9593Correspondence
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Received: 09 September 2014
Accepted: 15 December 2014