About Healthcare-Associated Infections (HAIs)
HAIs are conditions resulting from the presence of an infectious agent(s) that occurs in a patient in a health care setting that was not present at the time of admission.
What are HAIs
- HAIs occur in all settings of care including acute care within hospitals, same day surgical centers, ambulatory outpatient care in health care clinics, and long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities.
- HAIs are associated with a variety of causes including (but not limited to):
- The use of medical devices, such as catheters and ventilators
- Complications following a surgical procedure
- Transmission between patients and health care workers
- The result of antibiotic overuse
HAI Prevention: What Can You Do?
- Be an active member of your health care team.
- Take part in every decision about your health care.
- Clean your hands. Wash your own hands thoroughly - use soap and running water for 15 seconds -after blowing your nose, after using the toilet and before eating or touching food or use alcohol-based hand rub if your hands are not visibly dirty.
- Ask all health care workers and visitors who have direct contact with you whether they have washed their hands.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions.
- Make sure your doctor knows about any allergies and adverse reactions you have had to medicines.
- Make sure that all of your doctors know about the medication you are taking. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, and dietary supplements such as vitamins and herbs.