Dr. Trinidad Solis: Harvesting Infection Control Solutions for Farmworkers



In the small rural Central California town of Selma, a young Trinidad Solis watched long stretches of farmland float by through the car window. She listened to her parents in the front seat discuss their upcoming doctor’s appointment in Spanish. As Mexican immigrant farmworkers, Solis’ parents faced hardships accessing healthcare, including a language barrier. Since her parents were monolingual Spanish-speakers, Solis often served as translator during her parents’ health appointments and helped them navigate the complex healthcare system. These childhood interactions spurred Solis’ desire to become a bilingual, culturally sensitive family physician who could provide healthcare, including infection prevention and control services, to vulnerable patients like her ...

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Latina Physician Collaborates with Promotoras in Sustainable Infection Control Efforts



In a modest house in Los Angeles, California, a young girl buried her nose in a book. She focused on the book’s colorful graphics of doctors helping sick patients. Closing her eyes, she pictured herself in this role. Her mother’s words echoed in her mind, “Education is the key to opening doors in life.” The young girl wasn’t sure how, but she decided she was going to go to medical school, and she was going to become a doctor. Decades later, the young girl — now a grown woman – has a successful career in medicine. Dr. Marlene Martin is an associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and a hospitalist at San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH). In these roles, Marlene combines her passion for clinical care of ...

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When Sharing Isn’t Caring


Sharing isn't caring germs

We use a lot of shared devices and equipment in healthcare. But these devices and equipment are all surfaces that can have germs on them. Because healthcare workers use and share devices and equipment many times a day and for many different tasks, it’s important to understand the role that these devices can play in the spread of germs. Medical Devices Medical devices are used on a patient’s body, such as a stethoscope or blood pressure cuff. They’re also used in a patient’s body, such as an IV needle, an endoscope, or an artificial hip. When devices are used on or in a patient’s body to provide care, any germs on those devices can spread to places in or on the patient’s body. That’s how devices can be the germ’s entryway into the body. Devices that are ...

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Update: Coronavirus Case Rates and Death Rates for Latinos in the United States


latino man at airport waiting face mask coronavirus covid-19

The coronavirus, COVID-19, can affect anyone. But reports show Latinos and other people of color are disproportionately affected, amid worsening historical inequities. What are the data really showing? UPDATE 1/20/23: New U.S., state, and city data! COVID-19 Case Rates for Latinos The U.S. population recently rose to 18.9% Latino. Coronavirus is disproportionately sickening Latinos. Variants like Delta and Omicron sparked case surges, too. Latinos currently comprise 24.5% of COVID-19 cases in the United States, second only to Whites (53.6%), according to CDC data on health equity and cases on Jan. 19, 2023. Race/ethnicity data is available for 65% of the nation's cases. COVID-19-associated hospitalizations also have been higher among Latinos. Several states are also ...

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How Germs Spread in the Healthcare Environment


germs in healthcare

Hospitals, clinics, and nursing homes are where people come for care, so there is a high chance some patients will have an infection. When a person has an infection, their immune system may be weakened, making them more vulnerable to developing other infections or illnesses. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the things we do in healthcare that can put patients at greater risk of infection. For example, if a patient needs an IV, there’s a risk for infection if germs on their skin are pushed into their body by the needle, or if germs on the needle or another piece of equipment get into their body. In healthcare, we are more concerned about some germs than others based on: The amount of them in the environment. If they can cause an outbreak in a healthcare ...

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Inhale, Exhale: How Germs Spread from The Respiratory System


respiratory germs

It’s easy to take breathing for granted. But we should know exactly what the respiratory system is and how it can play a role in germs spreading in healthcare. This part of the body can be separated into two parts: the upper airway, including the mouth, nose, throat, and windpipe, and the lower airway, including the lungs. Germs in The Upper and Lower Airways Many germs live in the upper airway. Like with the skin and the digestive system, most of the germs that are commonly found in the nose, mouth, throat, and windpipe keep those parts of the body healthy. But sometimes those germs can cause harm when they get into the lungs. This can happen when they’re breathed in and get past the lungs’ natural defenses, or because something we do in healthcare, like ...

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When To Apply Infection Control Actions


infection control

Infection control keeps germs from spreading and making people sick. Infection control actions are based on recognizing the risks for germs to spread. But what is that risk? We know that germs are found in certain places, and need a way, or a pathway, to spread to other places and people. They also need the opportunity to spread. That’s where “risk” is, and where you can keep germs from spreading with infection control actions. Identifying Risk You, your patients, and the environment can be pathways for germs to spread. Understanding how germs spread and where they live and thrive can help you understand “Standard Precautions,” which are infection control actions you perform every day for all patients to keep germs from spreading. For example, an important part ...

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Our Skin: A Protective Barrier, But Home to Germs


our skin

Many germs, especially bacteria, normally live and grow on healthy skin and usually do not cause harm. In fact, our skin is a reservoir for germs – a place where germs live and thrive. However, some germs on your skin, such as certain types of Strep and Staph bacteria, can cause bad infections if they enter the body. Because germs are everywhere, it’s important to understand the ways that germs can spread from our skin and cause infections. Germs Spread Through Touch Your skin interacts with the environment around you every day, mostly through your hands, because we use them so much. Germs on your skin, especially on your hands, can spread to surfaces and patients through touch. In the same way, you can pick up germs from contaminated surfaces and patients and spread ...

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5 Reasons to Pledge to Complete CDC Project Firstline Training on Infection Control!


pledge

When you practice infection control consistently and confidently, it can help stop the spread of disease in healthcare settings and save lives. This is why you and all frontline healthcare providers can publicly pledge to take training through the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s Project Firstline program. Project Firstline is a training and education collaborative that provides all healthcare workers, no matter their role or educational background, with access to the infection control information they need to protect themselves, their patients, and their coworkers from infectious disease threats. Project Firstline offers training and educational resources on various infection control topics, including risk recognition and infection control basics related to ...

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