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479,000 die each year in healthcare facilities from infections they acquire from their caregivers.
99,000 in hospitals / 380,000 in nursing homes/long-term care*

Overcoming Underwashing

Jim Mann's picture

Innovation In Nursing Home Handwashing

Funding Enhanced Handwashing

The funding step for enhanced hand hygiene proposals fill the waste baskets and shedding machines of USA nursing homes. Everyone agrees on the need, no one pulls out the checkbook.

Catriona O’Connor, the Proprietor and Director of Care for a nursing home in Ireland has an answer that deserves a look. She simply ranks all her care programs on the basis of risk and takes the money from less risky elements. Her's is a person-centered P&L.

Mike Mann's picture

Handwashing: "Not Observed"

Health department inspectors feed operator complacency

Handwashing is respected by most all caregivers to some degree, whether in the kitchens, patient areas or resident rooms. Lip service is at 100% while compliance is more likely around 25%-40%.

Check out this report sent our way from a Canadian experience that we believe may be widespread but unreported in the USA. We know of the common practice to check the handsinks for residual traces of water as an indicator of handwashing and deserving of a checked “yes” box in some jurisdictions.

Mike Mann's picture

A New Handwash to Celebrate World Hand Hygiene Day

The SaniTwice® protocol is a special friend of bedridden patients

First developed for the military, this two step, clenze-sanitize, protocol has found many applications in water-scarce situations beyond the deserts of the Middle East where is was first deployed. The latest “desert” is the bed of the bedridden patient. SaniTwice provides an uncompromisingly effective hand wash by using the hand sanitizer as a wash agent followed by a vigorous drying with a single-use paper towel. A followup application of the sanitizer according to label instructions kills remaining pathogens.

Mike Mann's picture

Visualization & Personalization Drive Handwashing Improvements

Germ theory comes to life by visualization and personalization of the poorly washed hand. A visual feedback explains why hands must be washed at least 10 seconds and preferably 15 or 20, depending on the contamination and the physical condition of the people under their care. This is the advantage in using the ProGrade Scorecard where a standard in quality of the handwash is established.

Patient Safety Awareness Week Pearl!

Authored by Dr. Will Sawyer - Founder, Henry the Hand Foundation

1 in 4 seniors have superbugs on their hands after a hospital stay

I thought it appropriate to share the impact of poor hand hygiene resulting in HAIs, in hospitals. And a brief inclusion of other non-HAI Hand Hygiene issues in every community; Norovirus, seasonal respiratory infections, epidemics (pertussis, mumps, measles, etc.), Lead ingestion, Foodborne infections and many more.

Mike Mann's picture

Hospitals: 99,000 & Long-Term Care: 380,000

This headline is the CDC estimate of deaths caused by Healthcare Acquired Infections (HAI). They are rarely added. The math is easy, 479,000. The solution apparently is not.

When 100 people acquire a norovirus infection it makes front page news yet 479,000 annual HAI deaths goes by unnoticed. Here is another way to look at the scope of this issue.

USA overall annual deaths:

  1. Cancer 580,350
  2. Healthcare Acquired Infections (HAIs) 479,000
  3. Heart Disease 380,000
Mike Mann's picture

The New Legal Look at Handwashing

“quality controls … to safeguard consumer and employee health.”

2016 is starting out as a potential watershed for hospital, nursing home and foodservice handwashing. Two high profile Norovirus outbreaks at Chipotle restaurants in 2015 were followed by two legal actions and a 35% drop in Chipotle’s stock price. Controlling Norovirus is highly dependent on good handwashing.

A Simi Valley California law suit was followed by a devastating New York District Court action raised by a concerned stockholder for failing to disclose that its “quality controls were inadequate to safeguard consumer and employee health.”