Hand Hygiene | HELP Foundation

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WHO SHOULD BE INVOLVED WITH HAND HYGIENE?

Any health-care worker, caregiver or person involved in direct or indirect patient care or contact, needs to be concerned about hand hygiene and should be able to perform it correctly and at the right time.

WHY HAND HYGIENE?

  • Thousands of people die every day around the world from infections acquired while receiving health care or from contact with unknown infectious sources.

  • Hands are the main pathways of germ transmission during health care or such unknown contacts.

  • Hand hygiene is therefore the most important measure to avoid the transmission of harmful germs and prevent health care and unknown contact-associated infections.

 

This section explains how and when to practice hand hygiene using one of the following ways;

  1. Using alcohol-based formulation: Used when hands are not visibly soiled, and it is faster, more effective, and better tolerated by your hands than washing with soap and water.

  2. Using soap and water: Used when hands are visibly dirty or visibly soiled with blood or other body fluids or after using the toilet OR if exposure to potential spore-forming pathogens is strongly suspected or proven, including outbreaks of Clostridium difficile.

TIPS ON HAND HYGIENE

  • Take care of your hands by regularly using a protective hand cream or lotion, at least daily.

  • Do not routinely wash hands with soap and water immediately before or after using an alcohol-based hand-rub.

  • Do not wear artificial fingernails or extenders when in direct contact with patients.

  • Keep natural nails short.

  • Do not use hot water to rinse your hands.

  • After hand rubbing or hand washing, let your hands dry completely before putting on gloves.