Handwashing: What is Staff Using?
Repository Posting Date2012-01-11T10:41:16Z
Author(s)Cedeno, Denise P.
Author DetailsDenise P. Cedeno, BS, RN, PCCN
(41st Biennial Convention) Handwashing is a simple process to decrease nosocomial infections in the hospital and all staff are expected to comply with hand-washing guidelines. I hypothesized that if staff is provided with what they prefer to use to wash their hands, compliance will increase.� Having several alternatives to use, also will increase compliance. Regardless of what is provided, heightening staff awareness of the importance of this simple procedure is vital.� I surveyed 31 hospital staff, 5 males and 26 females, including registered nurses, patient care assistants, rehabilitation therapists, respiratory therapists, physicians, unit secretaries, Environmental Services staff, and nursing students by asking three questions: (1) What product do you use to wash your hands (soap and water, waterless foam or your own product); (2) What product do you prefer to use to wash your hands on Seton 1 (soap and water, waterless foam or your own product); and (3) What product do you mostly use to wash your hands on Seton1 (soap and water, waterless foam or your own product)?� At a different time, I randomly observed 31 staff to see what they actually used. Twelve (12) used soap and water, while 19 used the waterless foam. Their reasons for selecting a specific method for washing their hands are as follows: accessibility; feeling cleaner; less harshness with soap and water; and being able to use waterless foam on the run. The findings showed congruence between what staff reported using and what they were observed using. In conclusion, the products made available to staff for washing their hands are used to reduce the incidence of nosocomial infections.