Looking after those who are vulnerable to infection

Looking after those who are vulnerable to infection

People who are at increased risk of infection include:

  • The elderly
  • Young children
  • The immunocompromised (eg those who are undergoing chemotherapy)
  • Anyone who has recently been discharged from the hospital
  • Those suffering from an illness such as diabetes

This is often because their immune systems are weaker, or have been weakened, to the point they are less able to fight an infection, such that even minor infections can have serious consequences.

How can we keep them healthy and comfortable at home?

A healthy routine to protect them against bacteria and disease is important.


  • Cook all food thoroughly – to kill harmful bacteria.
  • Clean all food preparation surfaces regularly.
  • Store cooked and raw food separately to avoid cross-contamination.
  • Keep bathrooms clean, and regularly disinfect the surfaces, especially the walls, floor, sinks and taps.
  • Wash your hands regularly, especially before preparing food, before eating and after going to the toilet.
  • Wash bed clothes and linen clean weekly.

Caring for a person who is lowered mobility

Many people who are at risk often face limitations to their movements. As poor personal hygiene can lead to issues such as infections, helping to keep them clean is important to maintain their health.

Make sure to help them:

Wash their face regularly.

Wash their bottom and genitals, especially after relieving themselves, to reduce the risk of infection.

Shower, bath or wipe them down once every two days.

Brush their teeth every day.