Infection and prevention control
Adequate infection and prevention control must be practiced at all times when administering first aid or cleaning up blood or body fluids. The following infection control procedures must always be adhered to:
- cover cuts and abrasions with an occlusive (air and water-tight) dressing to avoid contamination of cuts or abrasions with another person's blood and/or body fluids
- wear protective gloves when in contact with body fluids, non-intact skin and mucous membranes
- wear a mask, eye protection and a gown where there is a risk of splashing blood or other body fluids
- remove any broken glass or sharp material with forceps or tongs and place in sharps container
- wash hands thoroughly after direct contact with injured person or blood or body fluids with warm soapy water, rinse, dry and sanitise hands using an alcohol-based rub or gel.
Cleaning and sanitising
Where a blood or biological spill has occurred the following must be adhered to:
- isolate the area where the incident occurred
- clean up blood and other body fluids spills with disposable paper towels or tissues or by using a biohazard spill kit
- use hospital grade disinfectant (use 5ml of bleach to 500ml of water) to sanitise the area
- dry the area with disposable paper towels or tissues after clean-up (as wet areas attract contaminants)
- where a spill occurs on carpet, shampoo as soon as possible. Do not use disinfectant. Steam cleaning may be used instead
- items such as scissors and tweezers are to be cleaned and disinfected or sterilized after use.
Disposal of contaminated waste
Contaminated waste (for example, dressings, wipes, cleaning cloths, nappies, human tissue, and blood and laboratory waste) should be disposed of in:
- appropriate biohazard waste containers or bags or
- in the general waste in suitably labelled bags (bags are to be double bagged) or
- sanitary waste bins.
Reviewed 02 November 2023