What is included as part of Standard Precautions?
Essentially SP are a base level contact precaution model – preventing transmission by Direct or Indirect contact modes. The assumption is also made that all blood/body fluids are potentially infectious and measures should be taken by staff during healthcare to avoid exposure to bare skin or mucous membranes.
Asepsis – conducting invasive and other key procedures with proper regard to Asepsis is critical and applies to all care settings including non-surgical procedures such as preparation of IV medication or insertion of an IV cannula.
Australia specifies 8 key elements for SP – see poster below. Other ‘Standard Precautions’ that apply across all settings and patients include:
- safe handling and transport of laboratory specimens
- antimicrobial stewardship
- healthcare-associated infection surveillance and analysis of risk across the healthcare system
- safe hospital design, including ventilation
- Guideline for Isolation Precautions: Preventing Transmission of Infectious Agents in Healthcare Settings, 2007 Web reference point
- Australian National Infection Control Guidelines- includes links to standard precaution posters