Hospital finds hand hygiene compliance goes up after eliminating mandatory glove use

Less may be more when it comes to hand hygiene protocol, according to a study that reports compliance rose at one facility after it dropped a rule declaring mandatory glove use for all patient interactions.

The paper, published in the American Journal of Infection Control, examined hand hygiene compliance at a hospital in 2009 and again in 2012. In the interim period, the hospital's rules regarding mandatory glove use for all patient contact were eliminated, and the researchers reported increases in both patient-contact hand hygiene compliance and overall hospital-wide hand-hygiene compliance.

The authors concluded while further studies on the effect the results may have on pathogen transmission are needed, loosening the rules surrounding mandatory use of gloves for all caregiver-patient interactions did significantly raise hand hygiene compliance.

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