Infection Prevention Awareness 2015: Tips

Sources: ABC News.com; APIC.org
Infections such as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) only seem to make headlines when public figures are involved. New York Giants football player Daniel Fells has had seven surgeries on his MRSA-infected foot with two more scheduled. Plastic surgery on his foot is also planned. In his honor, let’s make Infection Prevention Awareness 2015 a point of departure for taking comprehensive action against spreading preventable infections.

  • In the locker room: How to keep sports teams and gyms from the schools to the pros free from MSRA and other infections.
  • At school: Tens of millions of school days are lost each year due to colds and flu. Here’s how to keep your school or campus healthy and productive.
  • At work: Maintain good personal hygiene practices and ensure a clean workplace — you weren’t hired to get sick.
  • Public transportation: On your journeys from point A to point B, don’t pick up dangerous germs en route.
  • On vacation: Find out about any vaccinations you will need before traveling, and be sure to pack a First Aid kit and lots of hand sanitizer.
  • Eating out: Freshly-cooked, hot-served foods are safer than foods that are on an unheated buffet table. Refrigerate and consume your “doggie bags” within a day or two.
  • Cell phones: How to avoid catching a bug from your closest companion.
  • Winter home cleaning tips: — Get your house ready for months of spending more time indoors without spreading colds or flu.
  • Wash or sanitize your hands after you come home from public places, especially hospitals. Wash hands before preparing food, before eating, between handling uncooked fruit and vegetables and raw meats, and after toilet use.
  • Safe cooking practices: Eliminate the chances of food poisoning with good preparation and dining habits.
  • Don’t share personal items. Toothbrushes, towels, razors, handkerchiefs, and nail clippers can all be sources of infectious agents (bacteria, viruses, and fungi).
  • Avoid placing purses, backpacks and diaper bags on surfaces where  food is consumed.
  • Keep pet environments clean. Keep pets vaccinated and bathed, and clean up accidents promptly. Provide clean bedding, water (not from the toilet), and food dishes; prevent fleas, ticks, and other pests from getting in.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces on a regular basis. Establish a schedule for daily and weekly cleaning and disinfection activities. Clean more often when there are sick family members in your home.
  • Avoid clutter to limit areas where dust and dirt can collect.
  • Organize your cleaning supplies in one area so they are easy to find, but out of reach of young children.

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