Hawthorne Effect at play in hand hygiene compliance: 5 things to know

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Santa Clara (Calif.) Valley Medial Center researchers analyzed the Hawthorne Effect in hand hygiene compliance among medical providers, according to pulse. The Hawthorne Effect involves people adjusting their behaviors if they know someone is watching them.

The study involved infection prevention nurses, who hospital staff members regarded as health monitors. The researchers also sent in young volunteers to monitor hand hygiene, who the staff did not regard as health monitors.

Here are five things to know:

1. The study found a 57 percent hand hygiene compliance rate among those staff members monitored by infection prevention nurses.

2. Researchers found a 22 percent hand hygiene compliance rate among those staff members monitored by young volunteers.

3. Researches concluded the Hawthorne Effect was at work in their study, explaining the discrepancy between the two groups of hospital staff members.

4. The CDC reported health providers do not adhere to hand hygiene rules more than half of the time if it is mandated.

5. Santa Clara Valley Medial Center will institute various strategies to enhance hand hygiene compliance.

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