Nursing safety issue

Nursing safety issue

            Of the safety issues I learned about in Unit 6, I believe that the most important issue to my future career as a professional is the issue of transmission of infectious disease, particularly blood-borne pathogens.  This means educating the client and focusing on the client side as well as protecting healthcare workers, particularly those who are more likely to be dealing with a type of client who needs to be taken precautions against because they have one of these diseases.  There are programs in place in society that are hoping to reduce the impact that these diseases have, particularly in those high risk areas such as those of intravenous drug users who are at risk for spreading disease through sharing dirty needles.  “Today’s health care setting safety issues are not only directed to patient care. They also address the protection of the health care practitioners” (Unit 6).  Healthcare workers must be prepared to deal with minimizing situations of disease transmission.

Assessing client risk levels are a big part of this preparation, but this is a mainly subjective and individual way of dealing with the problem.  There are also standard precautions in effect in various healthcare facilities and environments, if the names of which were provided, more detail could be told.  Generally, though workers are expected to be aware of the threat, not just from HIV and hepatitis, but also from other associated conditions that may be on the rise because of changes in the way that healthcare is given today.  For example, immigrants coming to the U.S. from areas with high levels of TB incidence and risk contribute slightly to the problem, but a lot of scholars focus more on how AIDS has changed the landscape of medicine and brought TB back into the forefront after it was first effectively treated in the twentieth century.  Drug users and people who are not getting enough food to eat are also at higher risk levels for contracting tuberculosis; it remains a problem that is played out on a national scale in many developing countries.

Because of the modern environment in which we live today, healthcare professionals must also keep a close watch for signs and symptoms of this infectious disease.  “Practitioners whose dedication to the beneficence of others often puts them in high risk situations for contracting serious infectious diseases such as hepatitis and HIV. To maintain the quality of health care delivery, the health care professions must continue to attract highly proficient and dedicated practitioners” (Unit 6).  Risk has recently multiplied significantly due to the prevalence of the HIV virus, which can be easily spread through contact with infected sharps, but it is still fairly obvious common sense that many intravenous drug users fail to report many contact situations to healthcare or other authorities.  The general environment is one of great potential harm.  Therefore, precautionary measures have been standardized and policymakers are involved.  Blood borne pathogens from shared needle use are a route of epidemics.  HIV/AIDS and other disease use this route.  The War on Drugs has made it difficult for many illegal drug users to get clean needles, and therefore the spread of conditions like hepatitis, AIDS, and TB continues.

REFERENCE

Unit 6.  no publication info. stated.

 

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