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World Day for Safety and Health at Work – Infection control and safety in the dental practice

World Day for Safety and Health at Work is a campaign held on 28 April internationally and annually to promote healthy, safe and decent workplace. It has been observed since 2003 by an International Labour Organisation (ILO). This campaign is for the benefit of workers like trade unions, representatives of government, organization employer’s as well as for the next generation. Its main aim is to achieve and accelerate action for sustainable development and make workers feel secure in their working environments. It also highlights the importance of focussing on challenges related to work aspects, thereby improving the safety and health of workers, and also combats the efforts through awareness.

About International Labour Organization (ILO):

ILO is a United Nations (UN) agency brings together workers, employers and governments of near state of members of 187 countries to develop policies and set standards of labour, promote and programmes devices to work decently for all men and women worldwide. The ILO, with the celebration of World Day for Safety and Health at Work, promotes globally the creation of preventative health and safety culture involving its constituents and its key stakeholders.

History Of ILO

The ILO began with the United States in the year 1919, as part of the treaty of Versailles that reflected on the universal way and based on social justice with the belief of lasting peace. The labour commission by the constitution was set up by peace conference, it was held primarily in Paris and later in Versailles. The head of an American Federation labour, commission chaired by Samuel Gompers of United States was together held with many representatives from nine countries; namely Italy, Belgium, Japan, Cuba, France, Poland, Czechoslovakia, United States and the United Kingdom. The outcome resulted in an organisation of Tripartite, with including executive bodies, representatives of government and employees. The constitution of the ILO permeable speaks the parties of high contracting were moved by the desire of justice and also to secure the peace permanently in the world. Due to increasing understanding aspects of the world’s economic interdependence and also to obtain the cooperation of working conditions in competing countries, reflecting on these aspects it states as

  1. Based upon the social justice lasting peace can be established universally.
  2. Improvement on working conditions is essentially required for labour where harmony and peace never waver.
  3. If in case of adopting conditions of human labour since obstacle was on the way of other nations the desire to improve the conditions exist for their own countries.

Goals Of ILO

Aim for living conditions and labour alleviating

  1. Conditions of labour and living of people must be improved
  2. Unemployment must be prevented
  3. Duration of hours of working on any day of youth, women and children all must be protected, and also care for disabled and elderly provision must be created

The overall purpose of these aspects is to be accepted globally with social standards and also in international trade in divided participants will be prevented from creating advantages over by decreasing the rights of employees.

Functions Of ILO

  1. International labour standards to be established
  2. Information on labour and conditions of industrial related is distributed and also collected
  3. Assistance of technology to be provided

Infection control and safety in the dental practice

In the life of a person, most people will visit a dentist in order to get to know about their oral health; therefore, dental professionals are held responsible for ensuring a safe and infection control environment practice.

Infection control

Asepsis concept and its primary role in the infection control was put forward two centuries ago, by Ignaz Semmelweis in Europe and Olive Holmes in USA. After the Joseph Lister’s studies, the principles were accepted on prevention of wound infection. Though it is very much well known in surgery and general medicine it has been considered as late coming to dentistry.

In the field of dentistry, there are 4 possible routes where the disease may be transmitted.

  1. Direct Contact
  2. Indirect Contact
  3. Airborne route
  4. Droplet Transmission

Planning for Infection Control

  1. Always assess upon return and prepare before

It is the basis for assessing the effectiveness at the end, there follows to improve the process as future aids.

  1. Basic Setup

Choosing a best operating area where exactly the position of patient’s heads placed with regard to artificial or natural light.

  1. Site Setting

The positioning of a patient, access to supplies, adequate lighting, excessive noise and dirt. There are factors must be considered in selecting a setup for treatment of patients.

Principles of Infection Control for Safety practice

  1. Take appropriate action to stay healthy
  2. The spread of contamination has to be limited
  3. Always avoid contacting body fluids or blood
  4. Make objects safe for use

Safety Measures for dental care delivery

Hand Hygiene

Always wash hands before gloving and after removing the gloves. Use alcohol-based sanitizer on hands.

Personal barriers

Using gloves, gowns, masks and eye protection is the safest measure during dental care delivery.

Other Safety Measures

  1. Instead of using fingers to retract tissue use retractor or mirror
  2. Maintaining a container for sharp used instruments in order to allow disposal of blades or needles after using immediately
  3. While processing dental procedures carefully handling instruments
  4. While transferring instruments between operator and assistant have to be done carefully.

It is always safe and best to treat everyone as if they are infected with pathogenic microorganisms and also it is safe to handle every contaminated item as if carrying an infectious blood-borne agent. The effort and focus are to eliminate or decrease in the spread of infection from all types of microorganisms. Eliminating and breaking the cycle of infection is the core objective of a dental professional. The clinician holds a responsibility for implementing effective infection control and also for safe practice.

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DISCLAIMER : “Views expressed above are the author’s.”



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