December is dedicated to raising awareness for AIDS, and celebrating victories such as increased access to treatment and prevention services.
International AIDS Awareness Month kicked off officially with World AIDS Day on December 1st. This month is dedicated to raising awareness, and commemorate those who have passed on, and celebrate victories such as increased access to treatment and prevention services.
According to AIDS.gov, more than one million Americans are living with HIV, but one in five of them are not aware that they are infected.
In the medical waste community, HIV and AIDS are often talked about, particularly when it comes to sharps handling and sharps disposal. Healthcare waste contains potentially harmful microorganisms which can infect hospital patients, health workers, and the general public. Part of AIDS prevention begins with proper treatment, care, and of course, disposal of medical equipment and sharps used during treatment.
According to the World Health Organization, a person who experiences one needle stick injury from a needle used on an infected source patient has risks of 30%, 1.8%, and 0.3% respectively of becoming infected with HBV, HCV and HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
HIV and AIDS prevention in a healthcare setting begins with building a comprehensive medical waste removal system, addressing responsibilities, allocating resources, and knowing how to handle and dispose of waste properly.
It’s imperative that healthcare facilities raise awareness of the risks related to healthcare waste, and implement safe practices. By selecting safe and effective waste options in an effort to protect people from hazards when collecting, handling, storing, transporting, treating or disposing of waste, risk is substantially mitigated so that the focus can maintain on the care and keeping of patients and their families.
For more information on infection control and other waste management options, contact Red Bags today.