Patient, physician co-washing may boost hand hygiene compliance

Physician compliance with hand hygiene protocols prior to patient examination may improve when physicians are asked to offer hand sanitizer to patients before washing their hands with the sanitizer themselves, according to a recent study published in the Annals of Family Medicine.

For the study, researchers asked patients to respond to survey questions about their provider's hand hygiene practices. The clinical trial was conducted in two parts. Phase 1 involved patient observation without an intervention to encourage physicians to offer patients hand sanitizer. Phase 2 involved observations made after the intervention was implemented. Collectively, patients filled out 384 questionnaires — 184 from Phase 1 and 200 from Phase 2.

Sign up for our FREE E-Weekly for more coverage like this sent to your inbox

Researchers found physicians washed their hands before examining a patient 96.6 percent of the time before the intervention and 99.5 percent of time after the intervention. Additionally, patients participated in hand washing when physicians offered hand sanitizer 83.7 percent of the time.

"Further research is recommended to determine whether 'co-washing' enhances clinic hand washing or hand washing at home by patients, and whether it can reduce infection rates," concluded the study's authors.

More articles on infection control: 
Redesigned Olympus scopes linked to superbug outbreak: 7 things to know 
Michigan health officials launch new website to promote vaccination 
Dallas County mumps outbreak approaches 60 cases

© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2020. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies by clicking here.


Featured Content

Featured Webinars

Featured Whitepapers