The goal of the Bloodborne Pathogen Standard is to establish guidelines for organizations to develop a program providing information, training and to protect individuals from occupational exposures to blood or other potentially infectious materials. Pathogens are disease-causing microorganisms. Bloodborne pathogens are viruses or bacteria present in human blood and body fluids, which can infect and cause disease in humans.
The most common ways bloodborne pathogens spread are through sexual transmission or IV drug use. However, any contact with infected blood or body fluids carries the risk of potential infection. It is important to understand what the hazards of bloodborne pathogens are, and what preventative measures you can take to protect yourself from exposure. Your attitude is a vital part of protecting yourself. The right attitude means taking Universal Precautions. This means that you treat all human blood and body fluids as infectious.
Personal Protective Equipment includes clothing and equipment worn by an individual during activities, which may result in exposure to bloodborne pathogens. Personal protective equipment always starts with gloves but may also include gowns, face shields, eye protection and pocket masks. An exposure incident is defined as a specific eye, mouth, nose or skin contact with potentially infectious materials.
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