The following self-paced program, entitled Universal Precautions and Pathogen Awareness

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The following self-paced program, entitled
Universal Precautions and Pathogen Awareness
for Schools, has been developed as an
educational unit for Rose Tree Media School
District Employees.
To advance each slide, left click your mouse. To
end the program, right click on your mouse and
select “end show” from the menu.
The last slide in the unit is a signature page for
you to print, sign, and give to your supervisor or
school nurse to indicate that you have completed
the program.
UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS and
PATHOGEN AWARENESS FOR
SCHOOLS
A Self Directed Learning Unit for
RTMSD Employees
Exposure to disease
causing viruses
and bacteria can
occur anywhere-even in schools
Disease-causing bacteria,
viruses, and other
microorganisms are called
pathogens.
Although the risk of exposure to
pathogens for a school employee
is low, it is not zero.
For this reason, it is important to
know about pathogens and how
to protect yourself from diseases
they can cause.
Where or how might a
school employee be
exposed to contagious
pathogens?
Pathogens (germs) can be found
on environmental surfaces, in
blood, and in other body fluids.
Blood borne pathogens are high
profile pathogens because of the
serious nature of the diseases they
cause, but pathogens also exist in
other body fluids.
Body fluids with which a school
employee might come in contact
include blood, vomitus, urine, feces,
saliva, and respiratory secretions.
The following slides identify some
of the pathogens that may be
found in various body fluids.
Urine
 cytomegalovirus
Feces
Salmonella bacteria
 Shigella bacteria
 Rotavirus
 Hepatitis A virus
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Respiratory Secretions
Mononucleosis virus
 Rhinovirus (common cold virus)
 Influenza virus
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Vomitus
Gastrointestinal viruses such as:
 Norwalk Virus
 Rotavirus
Blood
 Hepatitis
B virus
 Hepatitis C virus
 Human Immunodeficiency
Virus (HIV)
 Cytomegalovirus
Three pathogens which may be
transmitted in blood (blood borne
pathogens) warrant further attention
because of the serious nature of the
diseases they cause. These three viruses
are:
Hepatitis B
Hepatitis C
HIV
Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B
“Hepatitis” means inflammation
of the liver.
Hepatitis B
An individual can be exposed to
Hepatitis B virus by coming in direct
contact with contaminated blood or
with blood-contaminated
environmental surfaces.
Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B virus enters the
body through a mucus
membrane or a break in the
skin.
Hepatitis B
When Hepatitis B virus enters the
body, it travels to the liver and can
cause life-long infection, cirrhosis of
the liver, liver cancer, liver failure,
and even death.
Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B virus can
live outside the body
for up to one week.
Hepatitis B
It is estimated that 1/3 of the world’s
population including 5% of the US
population are infected with Hepatitis
B virus.
Hepatitis B
A vaccine called the Hepatitis B
Virus (HBV) vaccine, which is a
series of 3 immunizations,
protects against the Hep B virus.
Hepatitis B
HBV vaccine is required for school
entry for students in Pennsylvania.
Check your immunization record or
with your doctor to see if you have
received this vaccine.
Hepatitis B
The vaccine is one important way to
protect yourself against Hepatitis B.
Human
Immunodeficiency
Virus
(HIV)
HIV
Although HIV has gotten a lot of
media attention, it is not as
common a blood borne pathogen
as Hepatitis B (HBV).
HIV
It is estimated that there are
40 million people living with
HIV or AIDs worldwide, with
about 1 million in the US.
HIV
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
does not live long outside the body, and it
is not an easy virus to pass from one
person to another, however, the
consequences of contracting HIV are so
serious, that one must always protect
oneself against possibly coming in contact
with the virus.
HIV
HIV is transmitted through
contaminated blood, semen,
vaginal secretions, and breast
milk.
HIV
Although the virus can be found in
sweat, tears, vomit, saliva, feces, and
urine, it has never been reported that
it was ever transmitted in these
fluids.
HIV
HIV invades and destroys the
immune system and weakens
cells that normally fight off
infection, leaving the body unable
to fight other diseases.
HIV
People who become infected with HIV may
have no symptoms for up to 10 years, but
they can still transmit the infection to
others. Meanwhile, their immune system
gradually weakens until they are
diagnosed with AIDS.
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000602.htm#Symptoms
HIV
HIV is a chronic medical condition that can
be treated, but not cured. There are
effective means of preventing
complications and delaying, but not
preventing, progression to AIDS. At the
present time, not all persons infected with
HIV have progressed to AIDS, but time
has shown that the vast majority do.
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000602.htm#Symptoms
Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C is less easily transmitted
than Hepatitis B, but it is a more
serious illness.
Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C can cause liver
damage, cirrhosis, and cancer.
Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C virus can live up to a
week outside the body.
Hepatitis C
It is estimated that about 4 million
people in the US have been
infected with Hepatitis C.
What can school employees
do to protect themselves
against these and other
potentially dangerous
pathogens?
School employees should
follow these two important
guidelines:
1) Practice good hand washing
2) Use universal precautions
Guideline One
Practice Good Hand Washing
Why is hand washing so important?
Hand washing, when done
correctly, is the single most
effective way to prevent the
spread of communicable diseases.
steps to good hand washing:
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Wet hands with warm running water.
Add soap.
Rub hands together away from the running water
in order to form a lather.
Rub hands for at least 15 seconds.
Wash the front, back, fingers, and under nails.
Hold hands downward while rinsing under warm
water so that the water does not run down arms.
Dry thoroughly with paper towel.
Turn off water with a towel and dispose of it
properly.
Remember to rub your hands for at
least 15 seconds and form a
lather with the soap.
(Time yourself by singing Row,
Row, Row Your Boat, or Happy
Birthday.)
Soap lather suspends dirt and
germs so they can be easily
washed away.
If using alcohol based hand gel,
use ½ to 1 teaspoon in the palm
of your hand.
Rub hands, covering all surfaces
with sanitizer and let dry.
Alcohol based sanitizers should
contain at least 60% alcohol.
Guideline Two
Use Universal Precautions
“Universal precautions” means
treating ALL body fluids as if they
are contaminated with pathogens.
This means wearing gloves
when coming in contact with
any body fluid.
Skin is the first line of defense
against pathogens but germs can
enter through small cuts or tiny
breaks in the skin.
Gloves act as a second line of
defense—a second barrier—to
keep pathogens from entering the
body.
Your school nurse or supervisor
can provide you with
disposable gloves.
Any open cuts or sores should be
covered with a band-aid or
dressing before putting on gloves.
Never pick up sharp objects or
broken glass with a gloved or
bare hand.
Gloves are designed for single use
only and should be replaced as
soon as possible if there is a tear
or defect.
It is important to remove gloves
without touching the outside
surface with your bare hands
since the outside may be
contaminated with pathogens.
To remove gloves, begin by
grasping the cuff on the outside
surface with your other gloved
hand.
Pull the glove toward fingers and
off into the other gloved hand.
Hold the glove you removed in the
palm of your gloved hand.
Remove the second glove by sliding
your fingers underneath the cuff to
avoid touching the outside surface with
your bare hand.
Pull it off toward your fingers,
removing the glove completely.
With contaminated surfaces safely
facing inward, gloves are ready for
disposal in the trash.
Always wash hands after removing
gloves because gloves may contain
flaws or defects that are not
noticeable or you may have
accidentally touched a contaminated
part of the glove.
Be smart! Take the time to protect
yourself with gloves before
assisting a student or colleague
who needs first aid.
Our school buses are
supplied with “spill
kits.” Bus drivers are
trained to use the
supplied products
including gloves,
absorbent agent, and
cleaning tool, if there
is a incident
necessitating body
fluid clean-up on the
bus.
Do not attempt to clean up body
fluids such as vomit or blood unless
you have had special training.
Instead, call a custodian.
Our custodians have been trained
in the clean-up of body fluids and
hazardous wastes and have
equipment and products
appropriate for the job.
What should you do if you come in
contact with body fluids?
Wash hands immediately with warm
water and soap for at least 15
seconds.
 Follow district guidelines to report the
exposure incident to your supervisor.
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Review of Important Points
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You can come in contact with pathogens
anywhere—even in schools.
Protect yourself against pathogens by practicing
good hand washing and universal precautions.
Universal precautions means treating all body
fluids as if they were contaminated and wearing
gloves if there is a chance of contact with body
fluids or contaminated surfaces.
Universal precautions are an important way to
protect yourself and others.
A safe school is a school where
good hand washing is practiced
and universal precautions are
followed.
I have completed the self-paced learning
unit entitled Universal Precautions and
Pathogen Awareness for Schools.
I understand that if I have questions, I will
contact my school nurse or supervisor.
Name___________________ Date______
Job Title____________ Building_________
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