Spreading Hand Hygiene, Not Infection

As health care providers, we know that hand hygiene is the number one way to prevent the spread of infection.

However, for many of our patients and residents, their ability to effectively access hand hygiene can be compromised due to mobility issues. Our leadership in patients’ and residents’ hand hygiene has involved a number of innovative projects and approaches, one of which happening last fall with the launch of a collaborative pilot project between Volunteer Resources and Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC), which led to amazing results.

In early September, a dozen of Providence Health Care volunteers, called “Hand Hygiene Ambassadors,” were trained by members of IPAC team to educate volunteers on the importance of hand hygiene, the five moments of hand hygiene and correct handwashing techniques. A month later, these Hand Hygiene Ambassador Volunteers, who are incredibly passionate about enhancing patients’ and residents’ hand hygiene experiences, 83 fellow volunteers had been trained. The goal of this collaboration was to reach and educate more volunteers before the start of flu season and, given its success, the intention for next year is to grow this program to further support the health and well-being of our patients and residents.