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Without Environmental Hygiene, Hand Hygiene Programs Fall Short in Reducing HAIs in Hospital Settings, Says UMF Corporation

CHICAGO, May 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- World Hand Hygiene Day is May 5 and UMF Corporation is taking this occasion to remind healthcare administrators and staff that without environmental hygiene as a component, hand-washing programs will likely fail in reducing preventable healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

"Studies show that hand-hygiene compliance is typically well below 50 percent, but even if it were possible to achieve 100 percent compliance, hand hygiene as a solitary initiative will have little if any impact on reducing preventable HAIs," said George Clarke, CEO of UMF Corporation, a developer of infection prevention products. "It's all for naught if the first surface contacted in a hospital by a disinfected or gloved hand is contaminated. Environmental hygiene is a prerequisite to hand hygiene – or at least it should be."

For several years, UMF Corporation has been promoting the need for multimodal intervention programs that, in addition to hand and environmental hygiene, include enterprise-wide support, education, training, best practices and innovative methodologies supported by high-performance products capable of significantly reducing pathogens in all patient environments.

"These efforts, when supported by all efforts within the hospital, have achieved excellent results," Clarke said.

The World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other partners celebrate World Hand Hygiene Day. The goal is to encourage healthcare providers to promote good hand hygiene measures to reduce the risk of infection among patients.

"We applaud these efforts and we especially encourage the additional awareness that environmental hygiene is a required component, as is hand hygiene compliance, of a multimodal intervention program if we are going to reduce preventable HAIs," Clarke said.

About UMF

Innovators and specialists in environmental hygiene, UMF Corporation delivers advanced, patented antimicrobial technology with industry-leading PerfectCLEAN® products, education, training, motivation and support.  The company, headquartered in the Chicago area, is the only U.S. company that designs, engineers and manufactures high-performance fibers and accessories to help its customers meet tough new challenges in public health and safety.  UMF Corporation is the annual sponsor of the Hygiene Specialist™ Excellence award to acknowledge the invaluable contributions of ES.  For more information, visit

SOURCE UMF Corporation
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