Hospitals are a place to heal and recover from sickness or surgery. However, some patients may acquire an infection during their stay, which may lead to further symptoms or complications depending on the infection. These are known as hospital acquired infections (HAI) or nosocomial infections.
The following are some tips from the World Health Organization (WHO) for reducing risk of these infections:
- all hospital staff should wash their hands and wear gloves before and after treating or touching you;
- any equipment that touches you (i.e. a stethoscope) should be properly cleaned first;
- your room and environment should be properly cleaned by hospital staff;
- staff should practice proper hygiene, including keeping nails and facial hair trimmed and tying back long hair; and
- unnecessary injections should be eliminated.
If you are concerned that any of the above are not being properly followed, let your doctor or nurse know. Not all infections are avoidable, but if you follow these tips to you’ll help reduce risk.