The number of high-infection diseases is on the rise in which some are new while others are re-emerging. Simultaneously, the outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases can have dire effects on areas with low health control structures and resources. The control and timely detection of such epidemiological diseases is a challenging activity in such areas.
Global health organizations continue to design strategies that cope with these diseases with collaboration from a wide range of expertise. These strategies fight these threatening diseases and scale the plans on a global level.
The primary goal of coping with epidemics and disease outbreaks is to control on-going threats and prevent future outbreaks. Ideally, the investigations guide the control measures towards a proper public health perspective. At the same time, specific interventions need accurate information, or else their effects may have consequences. Implementing these control measures is a balance between preventing further cases and protecting an institution’s credibility.
Standard precautions for implementing control measures apply to all forms of patient care procedures. Regardless of the confirmed status of diseases, these measures apply to the delivery of health care. Some of these standard procedures include:
- Regular hand washing
- Using personal protective equipment
- Respiratory hygiene
- Work practice controls
- Safe injection practices
- Sterilization techniques
- Disinfected environmental settings
While these standard precautions are not enough, they need to supplement themselves with other control measures. These measures include:
- Closing Food Premises
If the site inspections reveal an infection or disease outbreak that poses significant health risks, the wise choice is to close certain premises. The advice is to shut the premises until the issue has been resolved. It happens with the agreement of law enforcement agencies and the business owners. The responsible authorities then investigate and monitor the premises, and it remains closed until the authority approvals. The decision to reopen an establishment depends on the jurisdiction. It involves inputs from various agencies that control and prevent the outbreak. Handling the public health epidemic through premises closure is one way to contain a disease safely.
- Use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Another way to cope with an epidemiological outbreak is to create awareness in masses about using safety equipment. Like masks, gloves, and other suits that protect against infections, PPE effectively covers all surface or ground-borne diseases. For more severe outbreaks, protective eyewear, face shields, and protective clothing that adhere to safety standards help prevent these diseases. For instance, using gloves in places where there is a possible contact with blood or body fluids prevents the spread of infection. Similarly, using eye or face protection will likely prevent blood or body fluids splashes through sneezes or coughing.
- Respiratory Hygiene
Respiratory hygiene is another method of handling infectious outbreaks. The type of preventive measure is to limit the transmissions of pathogens through respiratory ways (either droplets or airborne). The strategy targets those individuals who have undiagnosed transferable respiratory infections and show various symptoms. The signs include frequent sneezing, coughing, runny nose, congestion, or increased respiratory secretions. Experts implement measures to control respiratory secretions in patients and accompany individuals with symptoms. They address the issue from the point of entry to a facility throughout the remaining process. Preventive measures require placing signs at the entrance for patients to cover their mouths while coughing or sneezing. Other measures include using and disposing of tissues or practicing personal hygiene methods to keep the disease spread under control. Facilities need to provide sitting space to patients with symptoms away from others while waiting for care administration.
- Exclusion of Infected Persons from Schools or Offices
The standards of hygiene observed by infected people determine their spread of disease. For example, people with diarrhea have likely chances to spread diseases than individuals with asymptomatic illness. Decisions to exclude such infected people from school or office premises is the best course of action. Local law enforcement authorities help in this process, so there is no illegal or unethical practice during exclusion. In general, people with diagnosed or symptoms of illness should stay away from group settings to prevent further spread of disease. In this way, people who come in direct contact with such diseased individuals should also practice preventive measures.
- Quarantining the Contacts
If all else fails, quarantining the contacted people is the best way to prevent any disease’s further spread. After exclusion, they are strictly limiting the movement of contacts through a home or facility quarantine is the best course of action. Quarantine zones give observers and handlers better access to monitor and control the spread. However, this process only proves useful if the contacted person voluntarily limits himself.
- Safe Injection Practices
Safe injection practices prevent the transmission of diseases from one person to another. It happens by careful administration of medication through injections. These practices are a set of techniques that performs injections most safely to protect the patients. These practices include administering the needle and syringe to one patient only rather than during a blood transfusion or local anesthesia. Using the same syringe to multiple patients is the leading problem that spreads diseases much more quickly than any other method. As put in isolation guidelines, safe injection procedures offer practitioners help in considering safe practices and appropriate handling.
- Disinfection and Sterilization
There is a multi-step process associated with disinfection and sterilization. For example, dental procedures and policies have ways to transport, contain and manage the equipment to prevent contaminations. Similarly, cleaning and disinfection of other surgical instruments or any other device that comes in contact become essential. The process ensures that each piece of equipment is safe to use for patient care. Training is a necessary aspect in the use of PPE and practicing sterilization after use. Cleaning removes dust and debris along with harmful bacteria and viruses to make an item safe for use. Ideally, place the sterilized equipment in close cabinets away from direct contact with anyone other than the handler.
Practicing safety and preventive measures are the only ways to cope with epidemiological diseases on a global scale. To ensure the successful implementation of these measures, local authorities need to create awareness among the masses.
Recommendations to consider these practices is the best solution to support healthcare measures against diseases. The current and earlier diseases have devastated the population globally and need adequate measures for prevention. World organizations have stressed enough these preventive measures to implement and ensure its practice.