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Effective infection control procedures in the clinics and laboratories will prevent cross-contamination that may extend to faculty, staff, students, and patients. The Exposure Control Plan outlined as follows is based on the Bloodborne Pathogens Standard issued by OSHA and CDC Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health-Care Settings – 2003. OSHA’s authority is to protect workers (employees); students are not directly covered under OSHA regulations. Students are required, however, to follow the procedures or guidelines outlined in this plan except where indicated. Students are required to bear the cost of some these requirements (e.g. Hepatitis B vaccine) since they are not employees.
The basis of the Exposure Control Plan is the use of “standard/universal precautions” to prevent cross contamination and the transmission of bloodborne diseases between health care workers and patients. Since medical histories and examinations cannot reliably identify all infected patients, the blood and saliva of all patients should be considered infectious. Standard/universal precautions are basic safety measures that must be used for all patients; they include the use of personal protective equipment (e.g. gloves, masks, eyewear, disposable gowns) to prevent skin and mucous membrane exposure when contact with blood and other body fluids is anticipated.
The following categories of employees and students are covered by this policy because of the risk of occupation exposure (defined as a reasonably anticipated skin, mucosal, eye, or parenteral contact with blood, saliva, or other potential infectious material). This applies to all employees or students.
Faculty are all dentists and dental hygienists employed by the College.
Staff are other support personnel employed by the College.
Students are all dental hygiene students.
If your occupational duties call for you to participate in any of the following tasks, even on a sporadic basis, you may be at risk and must follow standard/universal precautions, receive training, and receive the HBV vaccine.
Assisting in a dental procedure
Cleaning, disinfecting, and/or sterilizing contaminated equipment
Scrubbing contaminated counter tops and other environmental surfaces
Performing clinical or laboratory procedures
Disposing of contaminated materials
Emptying trash containers used for the disposal of contaminated materials
Flushing water lines in the dental unit
Repairing/cleaning evacuation system
Cleaning infectious material spills
GENERAL HOUSEKEEPING AND PROTECTION PRACTICES
The following are general infection control measures:
1. Clean and disinfect all contaminated work surfaces in the clinics and labs.
2. All trash/waste receptacles and clinic floors must be emptied/cleaned and disinfected at the completion of the clinic session.
3. Door knobs, clinic telephone, counter/table tops should be cleaned and disinfected at the end of each clinic session.
4. Faculty, staff, and students should not eat, drink, smoke, apply lip balm/makeup, or handle contact lenses where occupational exposure is likely to occur.
5. Personal protective equipment must be removed and hands washed prior to leaving the clinic/lab areas.
Employees: All employees with anticipated occupational exposure are required to participate in a training program provided at no cost and during working hours. This training will be provided at the time of initial assignment to the task where occupational exposure may occur, and at least annually thereafter. All employees have access to a copy of the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard , the CDC Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health-Care Settings (2003) and the Exposure Control Plan.
Students: All students with occupational exposure risks must receive training prior to clinical activity and at least annually thereafter. In addition, they will receive information on infectious diseases and infection control throughout the dental hygiene curriculum. Students receive a copy of the Exposure Control Plan as found in the CBC Dental Hygiene Clinic Manual and the “Guidelines for Infection Control in Dental Health-Care Settings 2003" which is located in the required text, Clinical Practice of the Dental Hygienist.
All faculty, students, and staff who come in contact or may come in contact with blood, body fluids, or tissues must adhere to the guidelines as set forth in this section. Failure to comply with policy provisions will result in disciplinary action that may include one or more of the following:
1. Verbal reprimand
2. Grade reduction
3. Suspension from clinic
4. Review by the program director
1. Review by the program director
2. Review by the Dean of Instructional Services
3. Appropriate disciplinary procedures
1. Review by program director
3. Appropriate disciplinary procedures