At any one time, there can be millions of germs on your hands, although these are far too small to be seen by the naked eye. Some of these are harmful to health. A lack of hand hygiene compliance by healthcare staff continues to be a significant contributor to the spread of pathogens, resulting in Health Care Acquired Infections (HCAIs). Effective hand washing technique, relying on friction and dilution can mitigate the risk of HCAIs.
The objective when washing hands is to reduce the number of transient bacteria to a safe level. Effective hand washing relies on friction and dilution to achieve this.
The most important part of any hand washing procedure, after compliance, is the technique employed and the time spent.
Health Care Hand Washing – Universal standard
Five Moments for Hand Hygiene has emerged from the World Health Organization Guidelines on Hand Hygiene in Health Care (Advanced Draft) to add value to any hand hygiene improvement strategy. Quite simply, it defines the key moments for hand hygiene.