When you work with patients in any environment, there are a number of ways you can protect yourself. While you may not need heavy duty protection all of the time, being mindful of infectious diseases is essential when you are doing any type of patient care. If you are responsible for the safety of your staff, you'll want to find the best equipment possible to keep your employees safe. Cut resistant gloves to prevent puncture injuries, face masks to reduce inhaled germs, and even full body outfits to provide protection against bodily fluids may be necessary. Whether you work in a hospital, nursing home, or other care facility, you'll need to become familiar with various protective gear.
Protection from Sharp Objects
If you work with needles or other sharp objects that may get contaminated with blood, you may need to wear cut resistant gloves. For example, if you are administering intravenous medications to patients that have HIV, you'll want to wear gloves that protect you against a needle strike. While this example may be rare, you can be in situations where a needle puncture can be very dangerous to you because of what the needle has become infected with. Check out retailers like Your Glove Source to see what kinds of gloves will work best for you.
Respiratory Protection for Air Borne Diseases
A typical face mask is going to protect you from breathing in germs, such as germs that cause a common cold. These are the paper type masks you might see that a dentist wears, or available when you walk into a hospital. This will allow you to visit a patient, even when you have a respiratory infection. In addition, it will protect you from breathing in particles that are dangerous to you. Some types of masks are made for smaller particles, so it's important to know what type of mask you need to protect you from the hazards in the air.
Whole Body Protection
Some patients are considered isolation patients, and this means you'll need to wear completely protective gear when you come in contact with the patient. Much like an operating room, you'll wear protective glasses, covering on your shoes and a gown that covers your clothing. In addition, gloves are worn and a protective mask. When you need to care for an isolated patient with an infectious disease, you'll have to follow all protocols.
Knowing what to wear to protect yourself against injury when working with patients is important. Always know where the protective gear is, and know how to put it on correctly.