Preparing a dressing pack
Between 5% and 10% of patients admitted to hospital acquire an infection during their stay. This equates to 200,000 new infections each year (NHMRC 2010). Opening a dressing pack without contaminating the aseptic field is essential for reducing the number of hospital acquired (nosocomial) infections.
The aseptic field is considered to be the area of the opened dressing pack except for the 3 cm border around the edge of the field. Any piece of equipment that sits within this 3 cm border must be considered contaminated. An unattended aseptic field is also considered to be contaminated. Once an aseptic field is contaminated, it must be discarded and the process recommenced.