High hand hygiene compliance yields lower HAIs, savings totaling $5M — 4 points

Chapel Hill-based University of North Carolina Hospitals researchers conducted a 17-month study finding high adherence to hand hygiene compliance practices lowered the number of healthcare-acquired infections, according to a Medscape report.

Researchers implemented a new hand hygiene program at the facility in October 2013, which focused on several hand hygiene compliance practices such as washing one's hands when entering and leaving patient rooms. Researchers utilized a χ2 test during the study to compare data collected by infection preventionists and designated nursing staff in the quarter prior to the program's implementation to data collected during the new program's first month following implementation.  

Additionally, researchers used a χ2 test to compare the average historical HAI rate from January 2013 until the program's implementation in October 2013 to the average HAI rate during the study period of October 2013 through February 2015.

Here are four points:

1. The study findings showed a 10 percent improvement in hand hygiene was linked with a 6 percent reduction in overall HAIs.

2. A 10 percent improvement in hand hygiene was associated with a 14 percent reduction in healthcare-associated Clostridium difficile infections.

3. Researchers did not note an association between hand hygiene compliance and HAI with multidrug-resistant organism infections.

4. The study authors noted that adherence to hand hygiene compliance resulted in an estimated 197 fewer infections, an estimated 22 fewer deaths and yielded overall savings of $5 million.

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