Infection Prevention and Control: A Biodefense Measure
Infection prevention and control (IPC) is the foundation for preventing the spread of infectious diseases, regardless of source, during medical treatment. Biological attacks will inevitably involve the medical management of sick individuals, which will not only tax the healthcare system, but also highlight the vital importance of infection control. Reducing the capacity for disease transmission will be pivotal in not only the early stages of an outbreak or biological attack, but also during times of crisis. Infection control programs also conduct disease surveillance and reporting to public health departments, which is crucial during an attack or outbreak. Infection control failures, like those in the 2013–2016 Ebola virus disease outbreak and continued Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) outbreaks, act as amplifiers for pathogen transmission. In the event of a biological attack, the strength and stamina of a hospital’s infection control program will be critical to early recognition, isolation, treatment, and reducing the spread of infection.
KeywordsInfection control Prevention Disease Transmission Isolation Infectious
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