Unit 39 - D2
A risk assessment is an important step in protecting residents and staff as well as complying with the law. The assessment helps focus on the risks that have the potential to cause harm and in this context, from the harm of acquiring an infection. In most instances, straightforward measures can readily control risks e.g. ensuring that clean and dirty linen are segregated to prevent cross contamination. The law does not expect that all risks will be eliminated, but requires that all steps that are reasonably practicable are taken to protect residents. The risk assessment is simply a careful examination of what could cause harm to residents in the workplace, including the risk of infection so that an assessment can be made on whether enough precautions have been taken to prevent harm.To assess the risks in a care home you must; Identify the hazards, decide who might be harmed and how, evaluate the risks and ...view middle of the document...
They will have useful information about how the work is done which will make the assessment of the risk more thorough and effective. In order to achieve compliance with the registration requirement, registered providers should ensure that they have assessed the risks to residents relating to infection prevention and control. Identified risks should be recorded and steps taken to reduce or control those risks. The effectiveness of actions to reduce the risk of infection should be monitored.
Risk assessments undertaken for prevention and control of infections are summary's of the assessment of risks to persons receiving care with respect to prevention and control of infection. In addition, risk assessments should be undertaken for example; each person who has a catheter; PEG feed; pressure sore; or other factor which makes them more susceptible to the risk of infection. Ultimately anyone within the home who can cause infection are subject to risk assessment under the COSHH Regulations and Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulation 1992. It is important that infected residents are isolated and infected staff excluded from work, until 48 hours after the symptoms have settled. Management of cases should be planned following a risk assessment, which should consider continence, personal hygiene, overall health, likelihood of physical contact with other residents or their food, the facilities available and the vulnerability of other residents. The local HPU can advise on this process. Infected residents should, if possible, have sole use of a designated toilet or commode as long as their symptoms persist. In the case of a likely norovirus infection, they should keep a designated toilet facility for 48 hours after their symptoms have settled.
Overall, risk assessments can contribute to reducing rates of infection by identifying risks of infection throughout the care home and putting control measures in place to minimise the risk however, for the best results these must be followed correctly and effectively or the risk of infection will still remain. As well as this the risk assessments need to be updated or reviewed regularly to make sure that all still applies and for any changes to be made.