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What is Biosecurity?

The work activity must be subject to a set of guidelines and standards that guarantee the health of the worker. There are a whole series of strategies and procedures aimed at the prevention of accidents and diseases. The area of knowledge that deals with all this is biosecurity. Its main objective is the reduction of work accidents.

The need for a safe work environment

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As the same term indicates, it focuses on everything related to job security. Occupational health laws promote the identification of possible risks in daily activities. The employer has the obligation to implement the necessary measures and the employee must respect the established rules, otherwise the chances of accidents increase.

To make the work environment safe, it is necessary to establish levels of prevention. Thus, in a

Biosafety in the hospital context laboratory where toxic substances are handled or in an industry with dangerous machinery, special precautions must be taken.

Biosecurity is a set of application tools that aims to protect health and safety, against a biological risk, both for people and the environment.

When this term is associated with health centers, we talk about biosafety in the hospital setting, where preventive measures must be applied to achieve the necessary containment condition, both for the patient and for the staff within the center, the community and the environment. .

Although the principles of biosafety are applicable to all types of work contexts, it is in the hospital area where they are especially relevant. In this sense, contact with sick patients can trigger the spread of infections, such as HIV infection or hepatitis C. As is logical, hygiene measures among health professionals are essential to prevent the spread of diseases infectious

Experts divide health risks into three sections. Physical risks are those that are related to electrical accidents, such as excessive noise or ionizing radiation. Chemical risks are associated with contaminating or potentially harmful substances, such as anesthetic gas, ethylene oxide or some drugs.

There is a biological risk when health workers are in contact with materials of biological origin, such as syringes with viruses or bacteria

An important section in hospital biosecurity is the treatment of waste. These can be classified as wet and dry (food remains would be an example of the former and plastic would be an example of the latter). On the other hand, there are biopath

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ogenic residues, such as blood bags or surgical material.

In order to make the different residues easily identifiable, yellow and triangular symbols are used and they specify the type of risk (for example, flammable material, magnetic field or radiation).

Within the principles of biosecurity we can recognize three basic and fundamental concepts:

Universality: implies that the practices must reach all people, whether or not a pathology is recognized. This makes sense when we understand that it is about the application of preventive measures. The staff that works in the nosocomial center, should know and routinely follow these practices.

Containment Barriers: are those that avoid direct exposure to irrigation, through the use of materials, primary protection elements, equipment and adequate procedures.

Waste Management: the correct form and appropriate devices for the disposal of contaminated material must be indicated.

It is important to comply with the basic principles and elements. For example, it is vitally important that a series of standardized practices be followed in the work and that each professional be aware of the risk involved in being there. These workers must have at their disposal personal protective equipment and have received the necessary training to know how to act well in case of need. In the same way, the workspace should be equipped with the necessary elements.

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This article was published on Monday 03 June, 2019.

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