Mrs. Smith is an 82 year old woman who presented to the Emergency Department, is diagnosed with gastroenteritis. Gastroenteritis is a contagious infection of the digestive system. The stomach and the intestines become inflamed due to the presence of causative pathogens (Webster, 2012). This results in numerous gastrointestinal disorders which cause vomiting and diarrhoea (Webster, 2012). Gastroenteritis is a communicable disease that can easily spread from one person to another (Webster, 2012). The most common ways of transmission are through the faecal-oral route, contact with environmental surfaces contaminated by a variety of pathways including aerolised vomit and contact with bodily fluids (Davis, Vally, Bell, Sheehan & Beard, 2014). Due to this, the two key infection control principles needed to be applied to Mrs. Smith’s care is the use of personal protective equipment and routine management of her physical environment. This minimise the transmission of infection to staff and other patients. Protective equipment required for infection control is masking, gloving and gowning (Davis, Vally, Bell, Sheehan ; Beard, 2014). These principles, developed by the National Health and Medical Research Council emphasis the prevention of infection and promote the development of individual health standards (NHMRC, 2012).
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