Hands-on fun: Celebrate International Hand Hygiene Day

May 4, 2017  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources,

Friday is the World Health Organization’s International Hand Hygiene Day, a perfect opportunity to reinforce why hand hygiene is a top priority at Michigan Medicine.

Washing your hands is the simplest, most effective way to prevent the spread of germs in a health care setting — and therefore, it’s the simplest, most effective way to keep patients and colleagues safe every day.

To promote hand hygiene compliance and to celebrate International Hand Hygiene Day, representatives from the Department of Infection Prevention and Epidemiology will be going around the academic medical center on Friday with a cart full of props and goodies to create a mobile “selfie station.”

Faculty and staff are encouraged to grab their friends and coworkers and pose with stuffed germs and other fun gadgets. Then post your selfies on social media with either of the following hashtags: #HandHygiene or #CleanHandsCount. Those who take part will also receive free mini bottles of Purell!

As you look out for the selfie station tomorrow, here are some “handy” tips to keep in mind to help protect patients, families and coworkers:

  • “Clean in/clean out”: Make sure you wash your hands with hand sanitizer or soap and water whenever you enter and exit a patient room. That will help kill germs that can lead to preventable illnesses.
  • Be a “hands-on” colleague: If you see your coworker forget to wash his or her hands, remind them! It’s your way of being a good teammate and setting an example of good hygiene in your unit or department.
  • “Hand it to them”: Thank your colleagues if you’re reminded. After all, it’s better to have a colleague remind you than to have a patient ask you why you forgot to wash!

Taking this “clean-remind-thank” approach will help you and your department keep everyone safe on a day-to-day basis. And it will help keep the organization among the global leaders in patient safety and patient-centered care.

To learn more about hand hygiene at Michigan Medicine check out the IPE hand hygiene website.

For more information about International Hand Hygiene Day and other ongoing campaigns, visit either the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control.