Guidelines for Students
Students who enter an Allied Health, Emergency Services, School of Nursing, or other programs with potential exposure to blood or other body fluids are at risk. Because of this risk, the following guidelines have been developed.
New Admission or Readmissions Requirements
Curriculum students will be required to have begun or have completed all HBV immunizations prior to the commencement of clinical activities or have signed a declination statement. Students must have a health physical and submit proof of all immunizations prior to the commencement of clinical activities. Students who are unable to fulfill clinical/program requirements will not be allowed to continue with the program.
Continuing Education Programs
Students who enter continuing education health programs with potential exposure to communicable diseases will be required to have documentation of immunizations including HBV prior to attending clinical sessions or sign the declination statement. Student records will be maintained in the Continuing Education Office.
Requirements for Currently Enrolled Students
Enrolled students must meet requirements mandated by CDC, OSHA, and the clinical site in order to maintain their eligibility to participate in clinical.
Requirements for Current Student Applicants
To protect the safety of A-B Tech students and those they come in contact with during clinical training, the following policies and procedures will apply to any applicant for or a student enrolled in a health or related program.
- Upon enrollment, the student must inform his/her instructor or the department head of any medical, psychological, or psychiatric conditions that affect his/her ability to provide safe clinical care.
- The student will be required to be individually assessed by his/her personal physician and/or a licensed mental health professional at his/her own expense to determine eligibility for continuation of the program.
- Eligibility for continuation will be based on the following:
- The potential harm that the individual poses to others;
- The ability of the individual to accomplish the objectives of the course curriculum;
- Whether or not a reasonable accommodation can be made that will enable the student to safely and efficiently accomplish the objectives and/or tasks of the course or curriculum without significantly exposing the student or other persons to the risk of infection.
North Carolina law
North Carolina regulations (NCAC-10ANCAC 41A.0207) provide that persons infected with HIV or Hepatitis B who perform surgical, obstetrical, or dental procedures or who assist in these procedures in a manner that may result in the exposure of patients to their blood must report their infection status to the State Health Director. It is the obligation of students in the Division of Allied Health, Division of School of Nursing, and the Division of Emergency Services, who meet the above criteria, to file a written notification with the State Health Director at the following address:
Communicable Disease Control Branch
1902 Mail Service Center
Raleigh NC 27699-1902
The HIV or Hepatitis B-infected student who performs surgical, obstetrical, or dental procedures must comply with the provision of any orders issued by the State Health Director, including practice restrictions, and shall notify the State Health Director of any proposed changes in his or her practice. The student must report the restrictions to his/her faculty advisor or other appropriate instructor.
All students are required to adhere to the Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control Plan for A-B Tech students (Policy and Procedure 512.01 can be found in the Admissions Office on the main campus)and to adhere to standard precautions, including the appropriate use of hand washing, personal protective equipment, and care in the use and disposal of needles and other sharp instruments. Students must comply with current A-B Tech departmental guidelines found in the course syllabus and student orientation materials along with the CDC and OSHA guidelines for disinfection and sterilization of reusable devices used in invasive procedures as outlined by the clinical site.
The College will give the following instructions to any student with potential exposure. The instructions are consistent with CDC Guidelines and OSHA regulations.
- Good personal hygiene must be followed at all times with special emphasis on good hand-washing techniques and the use of personal protective equipment.
- Personal protective equipment must be worn whenever there is anticipated contact with blood, other body fluids, mucous membranes, and non-intact skin during vascular access procedures or other anticipated handling or touching of any contaminated items.
- Students who have exudative lesions or weeping dermatitis should refrain from all direct patient care and from handling patient-care equipment and devices used in performing invasive procedures until the condition resolves. A written release from a physician will be necessary before the student can resume direct patient-care duties.
- The student will be made aware during class lectures of the potential risks associated with patient care and the student will, at all times, follow recommendations from the college and the affiliating clinical agencies regarding communicable disease policies.
- In the event a patient is exposed to a student’s blood or body fluids, the student will immediately report the incident to the clinical instructor who will report the incident to the infection control nurse/site physician and the department chairperson. The clinical instructor will complete an accident/incident report and forward it to the College Director of Security. This procedure of reporting applies to all students regardless of their communicable disease status. Any Allied Health, School of Nursing, Emergency Services, or Continued Education health care program students are ethically obligated to undergo testing whenever a patient has been clearly exposed to the student’s blood or body fluids.
- In the event any student is exposed to a potential communicable disease, the student will immediately report the incident to the clinical instructor who will notify the appropriate agency personnel and department chairperson. The student and instructor will complete the applicable agency incident report. Additionally, the Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College incident report will be completed and forwarded to the College Director of Security. Follow-up care will be offered as stipulated in the Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College “Exposure Control Plan” for students.
- Student health records will be maintained in the office of the respective department chairperson.
Persons infected with a communicable disease (including the AIDS virus whether active AIDS, AIDS-related complex, or tuberculosis) will not be excluded from enrollment or employment or restricted in their access to the College's services or facilities unless medically-based judgments in individual cases establish that exclusion or restriction is necessary to the health or safety of the individual or the health or safety of other members of the College.
You may contact the Dean of Allied Health, the Chair of the School of Nursing, or the Dean of Emergency Services with any questions or concerns pertaining to students at risk. July 2023.