Universal precautions From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Universal precautions refers to the practice, in medicine, of avoiding contact with patients' bodily fluids, by means of the wearing of nonporous articles such as medical gloves, goggles, and face shields.
Under universal precautions all patients are considered to be possible carriers of blood- borne pathogens. The guideline recommends wearing gloves when collecting or handling blood and body fluids contaminated with blood and wearing face shields when there is danger of blood splashing on mucous membranes and when disposing of all needles and sharp objects in puncture-resistant containers.
Universal precautions are recommended for doctors, nurses, patients, and health care support workers who are required to come into contact with patients or bodily fluids. This includes staff and others who may not come into direct contact with patients.
Universal precautions should not be confused with Standard Precautions which goes beyond universal precautions. Pathogens fall into two broad categories, bloodborne (carried in the body fluids) and airborne.
Universal precautions should be practiced in any environment where workers are exposed to bodily fluids, such as:
Bodily fluids that do not require such precautions include:
Universal precautions are the infection control techniques that were recommended following the AIDS outbreak in the 1980s. Every patient is treated as if infected and therefore precautions are taken to minimize risk. Essentially, universal precautions are good hygiene habits, such as hand washing and the use of gloves and other barriers, correct sharps handling, and aseptic techniques.
Additional precautions are used in addition to universal precautions for patients who are known or suspected to have an infectious condition, and vary depending on the infection control needs of that patient. Additional precautions are not needed for blood-borne infections, unless there are complicating factors.
Conditions indicating additional precautions:
or any combination of the above.
Protective clothing includes but is not limited to:
Natural history of disease From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The natural history of disease refers to a description of the uninterrupted progression of a disease in an individual from the moment of exposure to causal agents until recovery or death. Knowledge of the natural history of disease ranks alongside causal understanding in importance for disease prevention and control. Natural history of disease is one of the major elements of descriptive epidemiology.
The iceberg phenomenon is a metaphor emphasizing that for virtually every health problem the number of known cases of disease is outweighed by those that remain undiscovered, much as the unseen part of an iceberg is much larger than the part that is visible above the water. The iceberg phenomenon thwarts attempts to assess the burden of disease and the need for services, as well as the selection of representative cases for study. This leads to what has been called the “clinician’s fallacy” in which an inaccurate view of the nature and causes of a disease results from studying the minority of cases of the disease that are seen in clinical treatment  
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