Hand Hygiene top of mind this week

This week the staff at Counties Manukau’s Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) Service have been energetically promoting the importance having clean hands in every area of health care.

Using World Hand Hygiene Day on May 5 as a springboard to awareness, the IPC team has had a high presence at Middlemore Hospital and Manukau Superclinic, spreading the word to frontline health care workers, anyone involved in health care and visitors to our facilities.

The theme of this year’s campaign is “Save Lives – Clean your Hands. Why is sharing knowledge about hand hygiene still so important? Because it helps stop the spread of harmful germs in health care.”

Clinical Nurse Specialists Nitesh Gounder and Krista Steinbach say: “Together, we can take action to prevent infections and antimicrobial resistance in health care and build a culture of safety and quality in which hand hygiene improvement is given high priority.”

“Healthcare associated infections are among the most frequent adverse events occurring in the context of health service delivery.”

The IPC team has been giving the message that good hand hygiene saves millions of lives around the world every year, when performed at the right times in health care.

Krista added that in home environments, good hand hygiene practice avoids the spread of germs significantly – particularly during the Winter season when infections abound.

You can help yourself and your loved ones stay healthy by washing your hands often, especially during these key times when you are likely to get and spread germs:

  • Before, during, and after preparing food
  • Before and after caring for someone at home who is sick with vomiting or diarrhea
  • Before and after treating a cut or wound
  • After using the toilet
  • After changing nappies or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
  • After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
  • After handling pet food or pet treats
  • After touching garbage

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hand hygiene

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