Fundamental Elements Needed to Prevent Transmission of Infectious Agents in Dental Settings: (CDC Infection Control Guidelines)
Any environment where dental healthcare is provided must prioritize infection prevention. The task of creating documented infection prevention policies and procedures based on evidence-based rules, regulations, or standards should fall under the purview of at least one individual who has received training in infection prevention—the infection prevention coordinator. Policies and procedures should be adapted to the dental context and regularly (e.g., annually) reevaluated in accordance with any applicable state or federal regulations. The CDC also recommends that all dental facilities establish policies and procedures for the early identification and management of potentially infected individuals at the first points of patient contact.
Create and manage programs for occupational health and infection prevention.
Educate and teach all dental healthcare staff on infection prevention practices appropriate to their jobs or tasks (DHCP)
The most recent CDC advice on vaccines, testing, and follow-up is available.
Establish a regular review process for the infection prevention program, which includes assessing DHCP's compliance with infection prevention guidelines. 69
Standard Precautions consist of:
Putting on personal safety gear (e.g., gloves, masks, eyewear).
Proper breathing and coughing technique. Sharps safety (engineering and work practice controls).
Use of aseptic approach for safe injection (i.e., aseptic technique for parenteral medications).
Sterile instruments and devices.
Clean and disinfected environmental surfaces
Practice hand hygiene when:
Hands are obviously dirty.
Following barehanded contact with tools, materials, equipment, and other items that could be contaminated by blood, saliva, or respiratory secretions.
Before and after each patient's treatment.
Before putting on gloves and once more right after taking them off.
Personal protection equipment, in particular medical masks, is being used frequently by people all over the world. But PPE encompasses far more than just medical masks. It comprises gear worn by front-line healthcare providers and other crucial personnel, such as gowns, goggles, gloves, and face shields. To reduce exposure to infectious illnesses, particularly COVID-19, adequate use of PPE with quality assurance is essential.72 PPE with a guarantee of quality is still in high demand. UNICEF still plays a significant part in the distribution and purchase of PPE. In fact, as part of the COVID-19 response, UNICEF has sent more than 653.4 million PPE pieces to 140 countries since the pandemic started. Personal protective equipment (PPE) supply is still necessary for three reasons:
Defending healthcare workers from COVID-19.
Ensuring the continuation of vital healthcare services.
Being ready and responding.
According to CDC guidelines, Healthcare personnel should use the following PPE:
Face mask - An N95 respirator or a respirator approved under standards used in other countries that are like NIOSH-approved N95 filtering facepiece respirators Or A well-fitting facemask (e.g., selection of a facemask with a nose wire to help the facemask conform to the face).
Eye protection -Put on eye protection (i.e., goggles or a face shield that covers the front and sides of the face)
Gloves - Put on clean, non-sterile gloves upon entry into the patient room or care area which are required to be changed if they become torn or heavily contaminated.
Gowns - Put on a clean isolation gown upon entry into the patient room or area which is to be changed if it becomes soiled.73