Standard precautions represent a system of barrier precautions to be used by all personnel who are in contact with blood, all body fluids, secretions, excretions, non intact skin, and mucous membranes of all patients regardless of the patient’s diagnosis. These precautions are the “standard of care.”
This system embodies the concepts of “Universal Precautions” and “Body Substance Isolation”. A standard precaution focuses on reducing the risk of transmission of microorganisms. The use of barriers is determined by the care provider’s “interaction” with the patient and the level of potential contact with body substances.
The purpose is to reduce transmission of infectious agents between patients, caregivers, and others in the medical center environment, and to reduce the incidence of nosocomial infections among patients. Hospital departments and clinics are required to incorporate standard precautions into departmental policies and procedures to be reviewed at least every two years by the department and the Infection Control Committee.
Standard precautions will be followed by all personnel and will be based on the degree of anticipated exposure to body substances. It is the responsibility of the individual to comply with all isolation precautions.
One of the requirements prior to the exposure of students in the operating room, delivery room or any areas in the field of nursing that requires aseptic technique is for them to be oriented/ re-oriented on the policy in standard precautions. The School of Medical Sciences’ clinical instructor assisted the students during their return demonstration at the Nursing Arts Laboratory for the enhancement of their skills in this procedure.