10 top hand hygiene stories of 2016

Nurses' roles in hand hygiene improvement initiatives, videos promoting hand hygiene awareness and the possible role sinks play in spreading germs captured the attention of infection control and clinical quality readers in terms of hand hygiene-related stories this year.

The following are the most popular hand hygiene-related stories published by Becker's Infection Control & Clinical Quality in 2016.

1. Nurses — the closest thing to a silver bullet in boosting hand hygiene compliance

Nurse on the front lines play a pivotal role in the success of any quality improvement initiative, and hand hygiene improvement is no exception.

2. Award-winning hand hygiene video tracks healthcare workers' hands throughout the day

A hand hygiene-focused video from Winston-Salem, N.C.-based Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center won the sixth annual Film Festival at the 43rd Annual Conference of the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology.

3. FDA bans powdered gloves: New rule effective January 18

The Food and Drug Administration followed through on a rule proposed in March when it issued a final rule in December banning powdered gloves for healthcare workers, as such gloves put patients and workers at risk of illness or injury.

4. Are hospital sinks doing more harm than good?

Sinks may actually aid in the spread of infection, a STAT investigation found.

5. Are hand dryers doing more harm than good? 5 things to know

High-speed jet air dryers found in public restrooms are germ-spreading machines, according to a study published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology.

6. CDC's 3-step hand-washing technique vs. WHO's 6-step technique: Which is most effective?

Research released in April decided the ongoing battle of which hand hygiene technique was superior: The World Health Organization's six-step technique or the CDC's three-step method.

7. How much hand sanitizer is enough?

Most international standards for hand sanitizer used in healthcare settings do not take hand size into account when recommending how much sanitizer to use, and a study in the American Journal of Infection Control took issue with that.

8. Safety stand-down: How borrowing a military practice boosted this hospital's hand hygiene compliance to 94%

Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, was struggling with low hand hygiene compliance rates until it took a page out of the military's book and ceased nonessential hospital activities on all units to discuss hand hygiene improvement strategies.

9. Patient safety tool: Illustrations depict exactly where to place hand sanitizer dispensers

When it comes to hand sanitizer dispensers, location matters more than quality, and Tork created visuals to show hospitals the best places to put them to support hand hygiene compliance.

10. A culture of support: 4 ways to improve hand hygiene compliance

During a November webinar, Linda Homan, RN, senior manager of clinical and professional services with Ecolab's healthcare division, shared four main ways to improve healthcare compliance in healthcare settings.

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