Infection Control for Healthcare Level 2 (VTQ)

55 videos, 2 hours and 36 minutes

Course Content

What are Blood Borne Pathogens?

Video 3 of 55
2 min 36 sec
Want to watch this video? Sign up for the course or enter your email below to watch one free video.

Unlock This Video Now for FREE

This video is normally available to paying customers.
You may unlock this video for FREE. Enter your email address for instant access AND to receive ongoing updates and special discounts related to this topic.

Bloodborne Pathogens: Risks and Precautions

Understanding Bloodborne Pathogens

Bloodborne Pathogens are microscopic organisms, such as viruses, found in human blood and capable of causing diseases in humans.

  • Transmissibility: These pathogens can spread easily from one person to another, often without visible signs or symptoms.
  • Common Pathogens: Bloodborne Pathogens include hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and HIV (human immunodeficiency virus).
  • Precautionary Measure: Even though not present in every bodily fluid, it's crucial to assume their presence to ensure safety.

Transmission and Contamination

Aside from blood, other bodily fluids contaminated with blood can also transmit diseases:

  • Examples: Cerebrospinal fluid, synovial fluid, pleural fluid, amniotic fluid, semen, vaginal secretions, and urine.
  • Risk Awareness: Any bodily fluid, visibly contaminated or not, should be handled cautiously to prevent potential infection.

Methods of Transmission

Bloodborne Pathogens can be transmitted through various means:

  • Sexual Contact: Primary mode of transmission.
  • Sharp Objects: Contaminated sharp objects like needles can puncture the skin.
  • Illegal Drug Use: Sharing needles during drug use.
  • Broken Glass or Bites: Cuts from broken glass or bites can introduce pathogens.
  • Mucous Membrane Exposure: Pathogens can enter through mucous membranes in the eyes, mouth, ears, or nose.
  • Skin Contact: Contaminated objects touching inflamed skin or abrasions.

Protective Measures

While intact skin acts as a barrier against Bloodborne Pathogens, precautions are necessary:

  • Vigilance: Regularly assess for any potential cuts or openings in the skin.
  • Assumption: Treat all bodily fluids as potentially infectious and handle them accordingly.