Outbreak education should be an essential part of every healthcare facility’s protocol. Having access to information that could lead to the identification and elimination of outbreaks is a valuable tool in preventing further outbreaks and increasing patient care. When a full set of information regarding possible outbreak triggers and their management is available, staff can take steps to prevent such outbreaks from occurring.
Outbreak education can involve taking specific steps to reduce risk. The first step is to identify the outbreak triggers that have been identified during a previous patient visit. As outbreak information becomes available, the team may want to visit the hospital informational desk to acquire the required information for it to be implemented and recognized.
In addition to taking steps to reduce risk, the staff member should also perform work rules to ensure that those who are ill do not return to the office to have more work done. To reduce the risk of an outbreak, the staff needs to be familiar with the rules and procedures as well as the triggers. This helps ensure that those who are sick do not return to the office and return to an outbreak.
The next step is to develop a preventive action plan that will take place at a pre-planned time. For instance, if the staff member knows that there is a 50% chance of an outbreak occurring, they should formulate a plan that will minimize the likelihood of the occurrence of such an outbreak. This should also include a list of actions that should be taken during the outbreak period when the threat remains at a high probability.
Other steps that a staff member should be aware of are the areas where the patient should be kept safe. These include keeping the patient clean at all times, restricting contact with other patients, removing any personal items from the room, and restricting the patient to one room. Any other steps to minimize the risk of outbreaks should be discussed with the staff member.
The last part of outbreak education involves the use of infection control procedures to protect the health of the patient. This includes having a hand sanitizer and using gloves when hand-washing. It is also important to understand the proper techniques for destroying infectious materials.
If the infection control is not adequate, the room should be decontaminated before patients return. This includes working in the sanitary closet. Having these precautions implemented ensures that no further cases of infection occur.
Outbreak education is also important for those working in a hospital setting. When there is a potential for a patient to become infected, such information should be updated to allow for the accurate reporting of a case. While the information is best kept private, all staff members should know what is expected from them to ensure that the information is accurate.