Chain of Infection

For infections to occur, several things must happen. This is often referred to as

The Chain of infection

For the spread of infectious diseases to take place the Chain of Infection must be completed.

link 1

A susceptible Host

To fight off infection efficiently, the body needs to be in a healthy condition, which means having a high level of immunity (Immunity means the ability to fight off infection). The young, the elderly and those who are unwell can all have time where their immunity are low.

Link 2

The infectious Agent

This is a microbial Organism which can cause the disease. The greater the organism’s ability to grow and multiply (Virulence) and enter the tissues within our body the greater the ability to cause infection.

link 3

The reservoir

This is how the micro-organisms thrive and reproduce, they thrive on: a. Humans b. Animals c. Objects like water, a table, and doorknobs

link 4

The Portal of Exit

This is a place where an exit is provided for the microorganism to leave the reservoir. This exit could be: a. Nose by sneezing b. Mouth by coughing c. Faeces

link 5

the mode of transmission

This is how microorganism is carried from one place to another. a. Contact Transmission b. Droplet Transmission c. Airborne Transmission

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portal of entry

This is opening allowing the microorganism to enter the host, this can be: a. Body Orifices b. Mucus Membrane c. Breaks in the skin. d. Tubes inserted into the body i.e., catheters, Intravenous procedures.
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Infectious agents are,

Bacteria – a single-celled microorganism, bacteria multiply until a significant number is present to cause disease.

Virus– Are much smaller than bacteria. Virus must enter living host.

Fungi– are Multi- cellular Organisms that reproduce through the spores that grow into fungi.

Parasites – these are a plant or animal that live on another organism, they gain nourishment from feeding from their host.

Breaking the chain...

To break the Chain of Infection, high quality care and support needs to be always provided. Not everybody who carries harmful microorganisms will be ill or show any symptoms, so you must always work in ways that prevent cross-contamination.

Standard infection Control Precautions

Hand and personal hygiene discipline


Management of blood and body fluids


Safe handling of laundry


Appropriate use of personal protective equipment


safe handling of waste


Cleanliness of care equipment


provention of occupational exposure


individual care plans


cleanliness of the environment


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