Within SWLEOC, we have a dedicated Infection Control team with ‘Champions’ who lead the way in the prevention and control of infection. However, we all take responsibility, including visitors and patients, to assist in reducing infection rates. All our staff are updated yearly in this vital area and we encourage handwashing or hand decontamination on entering our facilities for all staff, patients and visitors.
We have information boards in all the areas in SWLEOC to display latest news and information, initiatives and audit figures to give feedback to staff, patients and visitors alike. We also have information booklets on how to reduce infection, prevent cross-infection and the answers to frequently asked questions.
SWLEOC has a dedicated surgical site surveillance nurse who sees patients regularly throughout their stay to answer questions and educate patients with regards to wound care. We also have a dedicated telephone number for all our patients to telephone, once discharged, if they have any concerns about their wound or other aspects of their recovery.
We work closely with the microbiology team and screen all our patients for potential infection prior to admission. Some patients may need to take medication prior to their surgery, if an organism known to cause infection is identified, to reduce any potential complications. If this is required it will be raised by the Pre-assessment Nurse. If treatment is not an option, then special precautions to prevent cross-contamination will be put in place during your stay.
We provide all our patients with hand wipes and encourage these to be used prior to meals to reduce the incidence of infection. Please do not be offended if we remind you to use them.
Some medications may increase your risk of catching an infection post surgery and therefore we recommend visitors with known infections, such as coughs, colds and stomach upsets, do not visit you during your stay. If you are unsure about visiting arrangements, then please ask the Nurse in charge of the ward.
If you have any concerns during your stay regarding the prevention and control of infection, then useful contact names and numbers can be found on the information boards. Alternatively, ask any member of staff as the prevention and control of infection is a top priority for all of us.