Routine practices replace universal precautions. Whereas universal precautions focused on the prevention of blood-borne diseases, routine practices are based on the assumption that ALL blood, body fluids (except sweat and tears), secretions, excretions, non-intact skin, undiagnosed rashes and areas such as eyes, nose, and mouth may be potentially infectious, even if a person shows no symptoms of illness.

With All Clients and During All Service Delivery

Keep your hands clean

  • Hand hygiene should be done using an alcohol-based sanitizer (60-90% alcohol), or with soap and running water (if hands are visibly soiled).
  • Hands should be washed before and after each client as well as before and after removing gloves.

Wear Gloves

  • Gloves must be worn with all invasive procedures.
  • Gloves should be changed between procedures with the same client and between clients.
  • Single-use disposable gloves should not be reused or washed.
  • Gloves are not a substitute for hand hygiene.
  • Clean, non-sterile gloves should be worn for contact with blood, body fluids, secretions and excretions, eyes, nose and mouth, or non-intact skin or contaminated items.
  • Clean, non-sterile gloves should also be worn when the skin on the hand(s) of the Personal Service Worker (PSW) is not intact.

Use protective equipment

  • Protective equipment such as face protection and gowns should be worn if the service being provided is likely to generate splashes or sprays of blood, body fluids, excretions or secretions into the eyes, nose or mouth of a PSW or onto their clothing.

Take care of equipment, sharps, and environment

  • All equipment that is being used by more than one client must be cleaned and disinfected or sterilized as appropriate between clients.
  • All sharps that are intended to penetrate the skin must be sterile, single-use disposable items.
  • An approved sharps container must be used and discarded in an appropriate manner.
  • Avoid recapping, breaking, bending or manipulating sharps (needles, razors or blades) in any way.

Related Information

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