Applying and Removing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Any infectious agent transmitted by contact or droplet route can potentially contaminate healthcare workers’ hands, skin or clothing. Healthcare workers are at risk of exposure to infectious agents transmitted by droplets via the mucous membranes. Cross contamination can then occur between the healthcare worker and other clients or healthcare workers, or between the healthcare worker and the environment.
Personal protective equipment (PPE) used as part of standard precautions includes aprons, gowns, gloves, surgical masks, protective eyewear and face shields. In the case of droplet and/or airborne infection, a P2 (N95) respirator mask is used.
Base the selection of PPE on the type of client interaction, known or possible infectious agents, and/or the likely mode(s) of transmission. PPE is designed and issued for a particular purpose in a protected environment and should not be worn outside that area.