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Infection Prevention, Control and Management


Hand Hygiene

Hand hygiene is the single most effective method to prevent the spread of infection. All employees of the IOOF Seniors Homes Inc., follow the “Just Clean Your Hands” program. The program was created by Public Health Ontario to help long-term care homes overcome the barriers to proper hand hygiene and improve compliance with hand hygiene best practices.  For more information please visit the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care webpage

Hand Washing

Hand washing, when done correctly, is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. A good hand washing technique is easy to learn and can significantly reduce the spread of infectious diseases among both children and adults.

Follow these five simple steps to keeping hands clean:

  1. Wet your hands with warm running water.

  2. Add soap, and then rub your hands together, making a soapy lather. Do this away from the running water for at least 15 seconds, being careful not to wash the lather away. Wash the front and back of your hands, as well as between your fingers and under your nails.

  3. Rinse your hands well under warm running water.

  4. Pat hands dry with a paper towel.

  5.  Turn off water using same paper towel and dispose of it in a proper receptacle.

There is more to hand washing than you think! By rubbing your hands vigorously with soapy water, you pull the dirt and the oily soil free from your skin. The soap lather suspends both the dirt and germs trapped inside and are then quickly washed away. Any type of plain soap may be used. However, bar soap should be kept in a self-draining holder that is cleaned thoroughly before new bars are put out. Liquid soap containers should be used until empty and then disposed of.

Always wash your hands:

  • before and after touching food

  • after using the washroom

  • after sneezing, coughing or blowing your nose

  • after touching pets or handling garbage

  • after outdoor activities.

When you wash your hands:

  • Don't use a single damp cloth to wash a group of people's hands

  • Don't use a standing basin of water to rinse hands

  • Don't use a common hand towel – always use disposable towels in food preparation settings

  • Don't use sponges or non-disposable cleaning cloths - remember that germs thrive on moist surfaces.

Hand Sanitizing

You will find containers of hand sanitizer located inside the entrance and at strategic locations throughout the Home. We ask visitors to use hand sanitizers liberally throughout your visit, but minimally at entry to the home, on each unit (if you visit in more than one location) and prior to exiting the home.

Hand sanitizers are also called alcohol rubs, gels and hand rinses. They are excellent hand antiseptics, provided they contain more than 60 per cent alcohol. However, they do not replace good old soap and water. Alcohol-based hand rubs should only be used if no visible dirt is present on the hands.

Apply enough antiseptic — about the size of a quarter — onto your hands to cover all areas of your hands, including under your nails. Use a rubbing motion to evenly distribute the antiseptic product until your hands feel dry.

Follow these steps:

  1. Remove hand and arm jewelry

  2. Ensure hands are visibly clean (if soiled, follow hand washing steps)

  3. Apply between one to two full pumps of product, or squirt a quarter-sized amount onto one palm.

  4. Spread product over all surfaces of hand, concentrating on fingertips, between fingers, back of hands, and base of thumbs.

  5. Rub hands until product is dry. This will take a minimum of 15 to 20 seconds, if sufficient product is used.

The use of hand sanitizers is very safe – the alcohol content of the antiseptic product completely evaporates as it dries.

Screenings/ Immunizations/ Vaccinations

The Ministry of Health and Long Term Care requires that all Residents of long-term care facilities be tested by the facility for past exposure to tuberculosis (TB). A 2 step Mantoux TB skin test will be performed upon admission. The results will provide a baseline of information for medical and nursing care.

The influenza (“flu”) vaccine is offered to the Residents of the Home at no cost, in the autumn of each year. The Physician will order the vaccine if it is appropriate. If a Resident agrees to have our Registered Staff give them the vaccine by injection, he/she or POA will be asked to sign a consent form. Other vaccines may be offered as appropriate, if recommended by the Public Health Unit.

Outbreak Management and Visitor Restrictions

In the event that of an infectious outbreak (i.e. Respiratory Illness, Enteric Illness) the Home exercises additional precautions to prevent the spread of the illness within the Home. This may include isolation of Residents to their individual rooms, use of personal protective equipment during care provision, segregation of home area Residents from affected areas, limitation of employee movement between home areas and visitation restrictions.

Pandemic Planning

The IOOF Seniors Homes Inc., has a policy to provide an immediate and organized approach to the declaration of a wide scale contagious disease outbreak in the community, otherwise known as a pandemic.

Furthermore, universal infection control procedures shall be followed at all times and the outbreak precautions shall be used immediately if an influenza or enteric outbreak is suspected.

While it is assumed that a pandemic will be a respiratory influenza, the exact form of a pandemic outbreak will not be known until it occurs. Variations of a pandemic may come from avian influenza, SARS, cerebrospinal meningitis, mutated Norwalk like virus, or viral hemorrhagic fevers.

The Pandemic Plan focuses on monitoring influenza-related activities outside of the facility that may pose a threat through collaboration with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit. The Home maintains linkages and effective working partnerships with other agencies having responsibilities for pandemic planning and response (i.e. The Ontario Ministry of Health & Long Term Care and the Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre).