What is infection control?

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What is infection control

Infection control is about controlling the spread of communicable diseases between people. Some of the individuals you support will be particularly vulnerable to infection and this means you need to be extra careful.
If a vulnerable person becomes infected, the symptoms may be serious and life-threatening. If the micro-organisms which cause the illness are resistant to antibiotics, it can be difficult to treat the illness.

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Localised infection

This means that it is confined to a specific area:

  • An Abscess
  • Bites and Stings
  • Cuts and grazes
  • The area becomes red quickly, painful, and swollen, occasionally there may be a discharge of pus.
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Systematic infection

This means that its infection affects all your body and can make you feel ill.

Systemic infection include:

  • Tuberculosis
  • Mumps
  • Measles
  • Chicken Pox
  • Meningitis
  • Whooping cough

Signs and symptoms for a Systemic Infection:

  • Headache
  • High Temperature, leading to a person feeling hot, as well as having the raised temperature.
  • Flushed with red, dry skin.
  • Chilled, with signs of shivering
  • Lethargy or fatigue, or they may feel restless with little energy.
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Change in behaviours.
  • Aching limbs

Why is infection control important?

  • Resistance to antibiotics is a growing threat: spread of the resistant germs must be controlled.
  • People suffer avoidable illnesses and dies.
  • work and family time is lost.
  • Infections are an avoidable cost to the patient and NHS.
  • Infections can become resistant to treatment.
  • Organisms that can cause disease are spread on healthcare worker hands and equipment.
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