Infection Prevention and Control

Germs, viruses, and bacteria. They are around us everywhere and occur inside and outside traditional healthcare settings.  People most commonly pay attention to germs during the “flu season.” Germs, viruses, and bacteria spread from person to person through something called the chain of infection. This section explores how you can take steps to break the chain of infection at work, and at home so that you and those around you can stay healthy.

Don’t bring an uninvited guest home… take bed bug precautions.

Anyone, anywhere can be exposed to bed bugs. Exposure is not tied to your cleanliness. These small bugs are about ¼ inch long and resemble an apple seed in appearance, they do not jump and they do not have wings. They can be found in hotels, schools, rooming houses and hospitals. Acquiring second-hand items also increases your risk of exposure. So if you travel for work, or work in one of these environments don’t bring an uninvited guest home… take bed bug precautions.

Take the following precautions when staying in a hotel

  • Keep clothing in a tightly tied plastic bag in your suitcase or hang clothing in the closet
  • The bathroom is a good place to keep your luggage, or put it on a luggage rack
  • Before you unpack
    • Check the headboard and nightstand for bed bugs
    • Next check the mattress and box spring. While mattresses and box springs are changed frequently in hotels exam these for evidence of bed bugs which could include blood stains and bed bug droppings. Don’t forget to check the seams and mattress tag.
  • If you detect signs of bed bugs request another room and tell hotel management what you found
  • If you have bites or find evidence of bed bugs during your trip take extra precautions when you return home
    • Unpack outdoors
    • Launder washables using the hot water setting
    • Place everything in the dryer at the highest temperature for at least 30 minutes
    • Vacuum your luggage
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Cold and Flu Season is here

Learn how to protect yourself from cold and flu season with this informative poster.

Practice good hygiene habits to protect yourself and your coworkers

1. Speak Up – Ask your workplace to stock up on supplies that break the chain of germ transmission
2. Lead by Example – was hands often, sneeze into your elbow, use disinfecting wipes to clean common surfaces, if you are sick – stay home
3. Wash, Wipe and Sanitize

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External Links

Bioaerosols in the Healthcare Setting eLearning

This 20 minute online training program was developed by Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Research Institute in partnership with PSHSA. It was developed as a result of a research grant and is intended as an introduction to this topic. The course provides information on the nature and generation of bioaerosols in the healthcare setting. This eLearning course is designed so that participants can learn at their own pace in their own environment.

By the end of this eLearning module, learners will be able to:

  • Describe bioaerosols in the context of infectious diseases and transmissionn
  • Identify scenarios where bioaerosols may pose a risk
  • Describe control strategies using the hierarchy of controls
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