2 organizations with effective hand hygiene protocols


Here are two organizations with successful hand hygiene programs.

If you would like to recommend another organization for this list, contact Anuja Vaidya at avaidya@beckershealthcare.com.

Pinnacle III. Pinacle III-managed facilities follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines for hand hygiene practices, which includes performing hand hygiene before coming on duty, before and after each patient contact and between different types of care on the same patient, according to Jean Day, director of education for the company.

Pinnacle III-managed ASCs with effective hand hygiene protocols include:

•    Boulder (Colo.) Surgery Center
•    Children's North Surgery Center in Broomfield, Colo.
•    Foothills Surgery Center in Boulder
•    The Surgery Center at Lutheran in Wheat Ridge, Colo.
•    Northwoods Surgery Center in Woodruff, Wis.
•    Orthopaedic and Spine Center of Southern Colorado in Colorado Springs, Colo.
•    Peak One Surgery Center in Frisco, Colo.
•    Pine Ridge Surgery Center in Wausau, Wis.
•    Skyline Endoscopy Center in Loveland, Colo.

Hand hygiene protocols at Pinnacle III ASCs also include Association of Perioperative Registered Nurses recommendations. Additionally, the protocols represent best practices for choosing between soap and water or alcohol based hand rub that is based on evidence of soil and the anticipated task. The use of artificial nail extenders and nail polish by staff is also prohibited.

"Hand hygiene is identified by benchmarking data collected each month across all Pinnacle III managed ASCs," says Ms. Day. "Measureable criteria includes hand hygiene before and after direct patient contact, before administration of medication and after removal of gloves."

Ms. Day also says that ensuring the success of a hand hygiene program requires discreet surveillance — observing the healthcare professionals under normal conditions without knowledge of being observed.  

"And refrain from reporting erroneous data. When data is inflated, false reassurance is instilled in the minds of healthcare professionals making room for complacency to set in.  In other words, tell it like it is," she says.

TRIA Orthopaedic Center ASC (Bloomington, Minn.). The surgery center began a successful hand hygiene program four years ago and it has grown to include hand hygiene audits not only in the ASC, but in the clinic and ancillary services section of TRIA as well, according to Mary Haugen, ASC director and Infection Preventionist Lori Groven.

At TRIA, audits are conducted monthly and they include real-time observations by trained staff and patient hand hygiene surveys. The staff observations and patient surveys create a snapshot of hand hygiene compliance in the facility.

Hand hygiene results are also reported every month at meetings of the ASC operations committee, clinic operations committee, QAPI committee and ASC staff. Goals are set for each year and departments that meet the goal for the first three months are rewarded. For example, in January 2015, the ASC celebrated with a pizza party for the staff, said Ms. Haugen and Ms. Groven.

Additionally, ASC staff are educated on hand hygiene through emails, department and organizational newsletters, new employee orientation and the center's annual skills fair. Patient care areas also have signage upon entry to each room as well as rotating hand hygiene reminders on the doors in the operating room area, noted Ms. Haugen and Ms. Groven.

The surgery center is a part of TRIA Orthopedic Center, and physicians at the center provide care for conditions of the elbow, hand, wrist, foot, ankle, knee, shoulder as well as sports medicine procedures. TRIA Orthopedic Center also includes an acute injury clinic and a physical therapy office.

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