Continuous monitoring of hand hygiene sheds light on compliance: 5 study details

Research published in the American Journal of Infection Control detailed how continuous electronic monitoring of individuals' hand hygiene can more accurately calculate compliance over just following the World Health Organization's guidelines that rely on direct observation.

The researchers used a real time prompting system that collected hand hygiene data in a musculoskeletal rehabilitation unit between October 2016 and October 2017. The study authors compared Hygiene performance in patient rooms with soiled utility room exits, and calculated the duration of visits to patient rooms and missed hand hygiene opportunities.

Here are the key details to know:

1. Overall hand hygiene performance of cliniicians was 67 percent, but individual performance varied greatly.

2. Clinicians washed their hands more when they were inside patient rooms for longer periods of time.

3. Hand hygiene performance decreased for patient room exits.

4. Series of missed hand washing events like entering and leaving patient rooms without washing accounted for 83 percent of missed hand hygiene opportunities.

5. "Continuous collection of hand hygiene data that includes temporal, spatial and personnel details provides information on actual hand hygiene practices, whereas direct observation or dispenser counts show only aggregate trends," the researchers concluded.

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