Part B: Standard and Transmission-Based Precautions

Summary

  • The use of standard precautions is the primary strategy for minimising the transmission of healthcare-associated infections.
  • Transmission-based precautions are used in addition to standard precautions, where the suspected or confirmed presence of infectious agents represents an increased risk of transmission.
  • The application of transmission-based precautions is particularly important in containing multi-resistant organisms (MROs) and in outbreak management.
  • Medical and dental procedures increase the risk of transmission of infectious agents. Effective work practices to minimise risk of transmission of infection related to procedures require consideration of the specific situation, as well as appropriate use of standard and transmission-based precautions.

The information presented in this part is particularly relevant to healthcare workers and support staff. It outlines effective work practices that minimise the risk of transmission of infectious agents.

Patient-care tip

In applying standard and transmission-based infection prevention and control strategies as part of day-to-day practice, healthcare workers should ensure that their patients understand why certain practices are being undertaken, and that these practices are in place to protect everyone from infection. Patients and visitors should also be aware of their role in minimising risks by following basic hand hygiene and respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette and informing staff about aspects of their care or services if necessary.