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The Joint Commission’s New No-Nonsense Handwashing Policy

Mike Mann's picture

Providers pay the price for dishonest compliance reporting

Handwashing For Life® serves as an Ambassador for The Joint Commission’s Targeted Solutions Tool®. Behavior change and the shared goal of sustainable handwashing compliance brought the two organizations together. This new surveyor standard of zero-tolerance is a multiplier for measurement, in keeping with the overarching standard of Continuous Improvement. It is a call to immediate action.

"Any observation by surveyors of individual failure to perform hand hygiene in the process of direct patient care will be cited as a deficiency resulting in a Requirement for Improvement (RFI) under Infection Prevention and Control (IC) Standard IC.02.01.01, EP 2," reads the Joint Commission

This new directive is as strict as it sounds, zero tolerance or strike-one-and-your-cited. It rings of possible frustration in the slow process of facilities updating their “secret shopper” observational protocols and adopting new electronic options. It is reported that only 3-5% of hospitals have adopted electronic observation and there appears to be much less than 1% penetration in healthcare culinary.