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Infection control: Making hospitals healthier

Jackson Hospital has one of the lowest hospital-acquired infection rates in the state.

Our bodies are designed to fight infections and prevent them. Our immune system is our infection-fighting tool.

Natural protection

In most cases, humans have certain properties in our bodies, called innate immunities, that allow us to fight infections virtually all the time.

For example, the skin, our largest organ, is constantly fighting infection or warding off infection by acting as a barrier against foreign, nonhuman cells. Other parts of our bodies, such as white blood cells, are always on guard to fight infections.

But no matter what precautions we take, sometimes infections break through our immune system barrier.

Fewer hospital infections

Jackson Hospital has engaged a team of experts led by infectious disease specialist Glenn Bedsole, MD, to help combat hospital-acquired infections, which are a major issue challenging hospitals today.

This team works on finding areas for improvement every day. The team members make constant hospital rounds, observing our staff and visitors and making recommendations on how to reduce the transmission of infectious diseases.

Because of the protocols we have in place, Jackson Hospital has one of the lowest hospital-acquired infection rates in the state. We also recently received special recognition for having an extremely low post-surgery infection rate—one of the lowest in the nation.

We have made a lot of progress, and we will continue to work on this issue. Our goal is to make hospital-acquired infections very rare events.

Jackson Hospital is on a mission to fight infections

Here are some steps Jackson Hospital is taking to help reduce the spread of infections:

  • Antibacterial hand sanitizers are located in common areas and in all patient rooms throughout the hospital.
  • Our infection control committee continually monitors hospital infection rates and identifies potential local or national trends.
  • Special task forces review in-fection rates for each specimen type and develop plans to reduce them.
  • An antimicrobial committee—including epidemiology, pharmacy, lab and infection control—ensures that patients are being treated with the most appropriate antibiotics for their particular infections.
  • We provide continual infection control education to employees, covering areas such as the importance of hand hygiene and isolation precautions.
  • We provide information to patients and families about protecting themselves from MRSA and other communicable diseases.
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