Infection is a process in which bacteria, viruses, fungi or other organisms enter the body, attach to cells, and multiply. In order to multiply, an infection must evade or overcome the body’s natural defenses.

These natural defenses include:

  • Skin: Designed to physically block germs, it becomes vulnerable when cracked or scraped.

  • Coughing Deeply: Typically this expels germs from the lungs and breathing passages, but it is less effective in weak, sick, or injured people.

  • Bacteria: Normal and healthy bacteria, called resident flora, are always present in the body. They are tasked with surrounding harmful germs and expelling them, however their abilities can be weakened through medications and then harmful bacteria will flourish.

  • Inflammatory Response: The body’s immune system creates white blood cells to surround and destroy harmful germs. This is happening when a patient has high fevers, redness, and swelling.

  • Antibodies: Produced by the immune system, antibodies are proteins that are targeted to attach specific germs, also called microbes. These proteins are produced immediately after a person is infected or exposed to the microbes. This process is called humoral immunity.

For the young and elderly, an infection can be life threatening before it appears, so it is important to pay close attention to details such as, mood change, habits, appearance, or any other minor change you notice.

Infection Control:

  • Be consistent with proper personal hygiene/resident hygiene

  • Always use leakproof bags for soiled linens

  • Disinfect surfaces, phones, tables, counters, and wheelchairs

  • Empty drainage containers according to policy

  • Wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) when necessary

  • Don't let resident items touch your clothes

  • Prevent dust and particle movement (NEVER shake linens)

  • Flush urine and feces in toilet, rinse well, and spray with disinfectant

Think you're ready?

Enter your zip code in the form below and we’ll match you with the best CNA schools near you and online. It’s fast and free!