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Healthcare-associated infections and infection control 

Healthcare-associated infections and infection control
Healthcare-associated infections and infection control

Pascal Astagneau

, Elise Seringe

, and François Bricaire

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date: 19 May 2022

Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) in older people frequently occur in mid or long-term cares facilities. The most frequent infections are those of the urinary tract, respiratory tract, skin/soft tissue, and gastrointestinal tract. The spectrum of pathogens are different in epidemic and endemic situations. Outbreaks occurring in long-term care frequently involve seasonal viruses such influenza, scabies, and multidrug-resistant bacteria such as Clostridium difficile. Ageing is a risk factor for HAI, which impairs immunological, metabolical, and neurological functions. Indwelling devices, poor nutritional status, and lack of mobility also increase the infection risk in the cared-for elderly. Infection control measures have to be implemented according to standard recommendations, including the use of alcohol-based hand rubs. Control measures should be adapted to the organization of healthcare facilites for older people, in particular environment and poor staff ressources. Focus should be made on vaccination programme of healthcare staff, especially against influenza.

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