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Airborne Precautions

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jun 5, 2024.

Why do I need airborne precautions?

Airborne precautions are used to prevent the spread of germs through the air or dust. Examples of illnesses that require airborne precautions are tuberculosis, measles, and chickenpox. The germs can remain in air or dust for a long time and spread far from you to others. Anyone who breathes in the germs from you can become infected. Healthcare providers will use airborne precautions as soon as they think you are infected. Ask how long you will need airborne precautions.

What do I need to know about airborne precautions in the hospital?

You will be placed in a private room that has an air exchange system. The system moves air out of your room and brings fresh air in. The doors to your room will stay closed. Healthcare providers will post a sign outside your room to instruct visitors on the precautions used in your room:

What do I need to know about airborne precautions at home?

When you are able to go home, you must continue to take your medicines as directed. You may be directed to use the precautions you used in the hospital, in addition to the following:

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.