Good hand hygiene is absolutely essential to patient safety.
Quite simply, we need to clean our hands and be ‘bare below the elbows’ to protect our patients.
To ensure all staff are clear about the importance of hand hygiene, we have launched our ‘Clean Hands Save Lives’ campaign across the Trust.
This campaign is about raising awareness so we get it right for every patient, every time; it is a simple thing that can really save lives.
About the Campaign
We wanted our staff to be the stars of the campaign, and you will see many of them have taken part - more than 30 so far.
See a selection of campaign posters >>
We hope that many more staff will take part in the future, and we've encouraged everyone to get involved as much as possible.
There is lots of promotional activity planned for the coming days and weeks, including pop-up banners, floor posters, staff badges and more.
How do we monitor hand hygiene and how well do we do as a Trust?
We carry out monthly audits. These involve members of staff in each clinical area carrying out observations and recording the results in a central database.
For example, ward staff will record if they observed colleagues going ‘bare below the elbows’ and cleaning their hands before and after seeing each patient. This data is then reviewed by each division and actions are identified, before going to the Trust Board for review. Our Infection Control team also carries out audits separately around the Trust and runs sessions on best practice.
As a Trust, we have 92 per cent compliance with the standards for hand hygiene. That’s why we are launching this campaign: we need to ensure we are protecting each and every one of our patients by performing hand hygiene at the right time, every time.
Advice for Hand Hygiene
Research shows that most people tend not to clean their hands thoroughly enough, so it’s important staff follow best practice guidelines – which you can find here.
We also have posters by sinks around the Trust on how to wash your hands or use hand gel. It’s also important that staff:
1. Always go ‘bare below the elbow’ in clinical areas
2. Tuck in ties and put lanyards in a pocket when speaking to patients
3. Speak to colleagues in the area if the hand gel is empty – if this is the case there should be a sink nearby you can use
4. Are not afraid to speak to colleagues when you have not seen them follow best practice