infection control program

Sample Policy Statement

Below is a sample policy statement that may be used by your fire department as part of your Infection Control Program.

 

 

Purpose:  To provide a comprehensive infection control system that maximizes protection against communicable diseases for all members and for the public that they serve.

 

Scope:  This policy applies to all members, career and volunteer, providing fire, rescue or emergency medical services.

 

This department recognizes that communicable disease exposure is an occupational health hazard.  Communicable disease transmission is possible during any aspect of emergency response, including in-station operations.  The health and welfare of each member is a joint concern of the member, the chain of command and the department.  Although each member is ultimately responsible for his or her own health, the department recognizes a responsibility to provide as safe a workplace as possible.  The goal of this program is to provide all members with the best available protection from occupationally acquired communicable disease.

 

It is the policy of this department to:

 

  • Provide fire, rescue and emergency medical services to the public without regard to known or suspected diagnoses of communicable disease in any patient.

  • Regard all patient contacts as potentially infectious.  Universal precautions will be observed at all times and will be expanded to include all body fluids and other potentially infectious material (body substance isolation).

  • Provide all members with the necessary training, immunizations and personal protective equipment (PPE) needed for protection from communicable diseases.

  • Recognize the need for work restrictions based on infection control concerns.

  • Encourage participation in member assistance and critical incident stress debriefing (CISD) programs.

  • Prohibit discrimination of any member for health reasons, including infection or serocon-version, or both with HIV<HBV, or HCV virus.

  • Regard all medical information as strictly confidential.  No member health information will be released without the signed written consent of the member.

 

Source:  NFPA 1581 Standard on Fire Department Infection Control Program, 2000 Edition, Appendix A, pg. 15

 

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