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Expert guidance on hand hygiene in healthcare settings
Date:7/16/2014

  • Before and after inserting and handling invasive device;
  • After contact with blood or bodily fluids, after direct patient contact, or contact with patient environment.
  • Measure Progress: Monitoring hand hygiene adherence is critical to improving practice, but there are many monitoring methods used and promoted in various settings, including advanced technologies. Consider advantages and limitations of each type of monitoring when deciding on a monitoring system.
  • Recognize the Importance of Glove Use as a Complement to Hand Hygiene: Gloves protect hands from contamination with micro-organisms and are essential when contact with blood or body fluid is anticipated. Gloves are also critical in instances when hand hygiene may be insufficient to prevent transmission via hands (e.g., during Clostridium difficile or norovirus outbreaks).
  • Empower Healthcare Personnel: Develop a multidisciplinary team that includes representatives from administrative and unit-level leadership to create a hand hygiene program that works best for the institution. Provide meaningful feedback on hand hygiene performance with clear targets and an action plan for improving adherence.
  • Wash Hands When Soiled: Hand hygiene should be performed using soap and water, not ABHR, when hands are visibly soiled.
  • Avoid Triclosan-Containing Soaps: A review of current literature found triclosan to be no more effective in preventing transmission of micro-organisms in healthcare settings than products currently recommended (e.g., ABHR and soap). Further, triclosan kills a narrower spectrum of organisms compared to ABHR and soap, which can lead to contamination and resistance.

    "It is our hope these updated evidence-based recommendations will guide healthcare institutions in implementation of hand hygiene programs and clarify the state of the science behind recommended hand hygiene practices," said Ellingson.

    The practice recommendations are a part of C
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  • Contact: Tamara Moore
    tmoore@gymr.com
    202-745-5114
    Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America
    Source:Eurekalert

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