PPE is in high demand during the COVID crisis and must be used appropriately and responsibly at all times. Apply standard precautions when providing client care including Handwashing, Social Distancing, Respiratory Etiquette, Gloves and Aprons.
Disposable gloves are a single-use item. They should only be used when coming into contact with body fluids, broken skin, dirty instruments and harmful substances such as chemicals and disinfectants. Change them after each task is completed. Complete handwashing between each glove change
For example, if you are attending to the hygiene of a client who has been incontinent and then needs assistance with eye care, you need to remove gloves and carry out hand hygiene between these two care episodes.
Gloves are not a substitute for hand hygiene. It is important that staff apply hand washing before putting them on when delivering care to clients, and after removal of items.
When to Wear Gloves
Wear disposable, single-use gloves for:
- All activities that have a risk of contact with blood or body fluids
- Direct contact with broken skin for examples wound or a rash
- Direct contact with eyes, inside the nose and mouth
- For handling equipment likely to be soiled with blood or body fluids
- Cleaning surfaces or handling clothing or linen soiled with body fluids.
Gloves carry germs from one client to another or from one part of the body to another so they must be changed:
- Between different care episodes for the same client.
- Discard gloves after each use in the client’s home, never wear them while leaving a house and never re-use them when caring for another client. They are single-use only.
Remember: Wear gloves when required for client care appropriately. Do not wear them for any other tasks including food preparation, shopping or for personal use.
Being considerate of PPE use ensures that we all have enough appropriate equipment to deliver care safely to our clients.