The role of nurse in prevention of Hospital Acquired Infections.




Nurses play a pivotal role in preventing hospital-acquired infections (HAI), not only by ensuring that all aspects of their nursing practice is evidence based, but also through the right way that is used by the nurse managers in teaching their staff nurses.
What Does Hospital Acquired Infection mean?
HAI is also known as nosocomial infection. It is an infection whose development is favoured by a hospital environment, such as one acquired by a patient during a hospital visit or one developing among hospital staff.
What are the roles of nurse leaders to prevent HAI?
In regards to preventing of HAI and create safe environment for patients, according to World Health Organization, nurse leaders is responsible for:
participating in the Infection Control Committee.
promoting the development and improvement of nursing techniques, and ongoing review of aseptic nursing policies, with approval by the Infection Control Committee.
developing training programs for members of the nursing staff.
supervising the implementation of techniques for the prevention of infections in specialized areas such as the operating suite, the intensive care unit, the maternity unit and newborns.
monitoring of nursing adherence to policies.
In addition, there are other activities must be performed by the nurse leaders in the ward:
maintaining hygiene, consistent with hospital policies and good nursing practice on the ward.
monitoring aseptic techniques, including hand washing and use of isolation.
Educating staff about using IV therapy properly because intravenous therapy is a huge area of concern with HAIs. Nurses can make a huge contribution in this war against infection by using full barrier precautions (sterile field, caps, gowns, masks and gloves) when preparing for the insertion of central venous catheters.
reporting promptly to the attending physician any evidence of infection in patients under the nurse’s care.
initiating patient isolation and ordering culture specimens from any patient showing signs of a communicable disease, when the physician is not immediately available.
limiting patient exposure to infections from visitors, hospital staff, other patients, or equipment used for diagnosis or treatment.
maintaining a safe and adequate supply of ward equipment, drugs and patient care supplies.
In addition to practical intervention, nurse leaders can foster a safe environment for nurses and patients by creating an open, non-punitive environment where errors and near misses can be addressed. This approach helps the managers determine how to improve the system and prevent future errors from occurring.
In short, nurse managers should encourage their staff nurses in all roles and settings to demonstrate leadership in infection prevention and control by using their knowledge, skill and judgment to initiate appropriate and immediate infection control procedures.

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