Universal Precautions


Universal precautions were developed because clients often harbor infections long before exhibiting any symptoms. By taking precautions we guard ourselves and other clients from possible infections.

These precautions use barriers to protect you against blood-borne pathogens.

Universal Precautions Include:

  • Hand washing
  • Disposable gloves
  • Masks, eye wear and face shields
  • Aprons and gowns
  • Bleach solution/ Lysol
  • Resuscitation device



As a personal care attendant  the primary barrier you will use to protect against disease is disposable gloves.



Potential Infectious Body Fluids Include:

  • Feces
  • Urine
  • Vomit
  • Saliva
  • Blood


When the above list of fluids come in contact with surfaces or materials the surfaces and materials are considered contaminated and require special handling. Contaminated materials must be promptly cleaned and disinfected. 



Contaminated materials must be carefully disposed of or cleaned so that they will not contaminate anything else. 


Procedure for Disposal of Contaminated Material  

  • Handle carefully
  • Hold contaminated materials away from your body.
  • Put contaminated material in a bag tie the bag and dispose of it in a garbage can outside of the home.
  • Soiled linen must never be placed on furniture or the floor.
  • Soiled linen must be placed immediately in the washing machine and washed using hot water.


Procedure for Disinfecting:

  • To prepare a disinfectant, mix one part household bleach with ten parts water.
  • Use the bleach solution the day you prepare it as it will lose its power to disinfect.


Procedure for Cleaning Contaminated Surfaces

  • Clean contaminated surfaces immediately
  • Always wear gloves
  • Use clean paper towels (or disposable wipes) and disinfectant
  • Have a plastic bag or container ready for disposal of used towels and gloves


As a personal care attendant it is your responsibility to NOT provide care to your client if you have a cold or any type of infection. Contact your supervisor immediately to inform them you will not make your scheduled client. This is a common courtesy and is a positive way to not spread infection.

Some Agencies require a note from the physician stating that you are well enough to return to work.


Infection control is one of the primary responsibilities of a personal care attendant. By practicing good infection control techniques, you will be safeguarding your clients, their families, other employees, yourself and your family.