Infection control: synonymous with managing infections

The main mission of the infection control team at AZ Jan Portaels is to manage healthcare-associated infections.
The measures issued by the infection control team are aimed at ensuring that patients do not contract infections during their stay in the hospital. This includes:

  • developing, implementing, and monitoring standard precautions for prevention of transmission of infectious diseases
  • surveillance of infectious diseases
  • establishing an epidemic policy
  • following up on hygiene aspects in the operating theatre and the delivery room
  • implementation of guidelines from official bodies
  • exchanging experiences and information with other institutions within the framework of a cooperation platform

If a patient has an infection that was not present on admission and occurs 48h after admission to the hospital, this is referred to as a healthcare-associated infection. Some of these healthcare-associated infections are preventable, but unfortunately not all of them are.

At AZ Jan Portaels, infection control is the responsibility of the Chief Nursing Officer, the CMO, an infection control nurse and an infection control physician.
There are several measures to prevent healthcare-associated infections, but hand hygiene (disinfecting hands with hand alcohol or washing them with soap and water) is the most simple and effective way. After all, we can transfer micro-organisms with our hands. Therefore, healthcare staff should perform hand hygiene at various times while providing care.

As a patient and visitor, you can also contribute to infection prevention. This is important not only to avoid transferring micro-organisms to other people, but also to avoid getting sick yourself:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water after each toilet visit.
  • Sneeze or cough in the crease of your elbow and not in your hands. If you do sneeze or cough into your hands, wash them with soap and water afterwards.
  • As a visitor, disinfect your hands before and after your visit. This will prevent you from bringing in micro-organisms and picking up micro-organisms from the patient's environment.
  • Do not visit if you are displaying symptoms of illness yourself (cold, nausea, diarrhoea, fever).
  • Do not touch IVs, catheters, or dressings of wounds.
  • If you cannot wash or disinfect your hands yourself, ask a staff member for help.

Want to know more? Read our patient brochures or take a look at the website

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