Why is Hand Hygiene So Important in Hospitals and Care Homes?

What is Hand Hygiene?

Hand hygiene is the process of making sure that your hands are clean and germ free. This is a core part of infection control as the hands are a point of contact between two people and a breeding ground for bacteria and infection to grow. This can go from using soaps, to using anti microbial – often alcohol based – gel rubs; alongside these methods use of gloves is a wise move, especially disposable gloves.

In the healthcare sector hand hygiene is particularly important as there is a lot of contact between patients and staff and also their loved ones. This means that those visiting the patient need to be extra vigilant when it comes to hand hygiene, for their own protection, but more so for the patient that they are treating and other patients in the facility.

Products that encourage good Hand Hygiene

Hand hygiene is a core part of ensuring that standards are maintained in care homes and hospitals. Having the right hand hygiene products available to staff and visitors is a key factor of ensuring that infection control is properly in place.

Hand hygiene products needs to be powerful and effective, as the types of professional that are at the biggest risk of passing infections.

Some of the products that can be used to help stave off infection can include:

  • Alcohol based hand rub – alcohol based hand rub gel is a quick and effective way to ensure that your hands are sterilised and free from the vast majority of germs, whether they come from contact with a patient or from a surface that you have come into contact with. Hand rub gels can be in personal bottles or in dispensers throughout the areas that need to be clean, allowing for convenience and easily controlling the threat of spreading germs.
  • Antibacterial Soap – regular hand washing is important, and a routine and proper measures should be taken in order to ensure that it is undertaken properly, this is vitally important in clean areas, those involved with surgery should always scrub in before anything else. However in food preparation or other forms of care it is also vital to observe best practices and clean down using high quality antibacterial soap.
  • Disposable Gloves – disposable gloves come in a wide range of forms, and make an ideal and convenient way to keep your hands protected and prevent a spread of germs and other contaminants from surface to surface.

Having the right Hand Hygiene Procedure

As well as having the right Hand Hygiene products, it is important to ensure that both staff and visitors are aware of the importance of engaging in a hygiene routine in order to prevent the spread of infection.

Alcohol hand rub should be available at doors and other points so that people are able to disinfect themselves between areas. Around sinks there should be a good hand soap, and signs indicating best hand washing practice.