Alcohol-Based Hand Rubs vs Handwashing

Tags: Hospital-acquired infection, Hand washing, Hand sanitizer

Language and Communication: Research
Dianne Pacifico
QBT1: Task 4 - Revisions
January 28, 2013
Western Governors University

* Alcohol-Based Hand Rubs versus Handwashing Efficacy
* Hand hygiene has been the foundation of preventing nosocomial infections throughout the hospital. It has been taught for several generations that hand hygiene is effectively accomplish through the use of handwashing with soap and water. Unfortunately, studies have shown that handwashing practices have fallen out, which have led to a noticeably low compliance rate with health care workers. This in turn has led to an increase of nosocomial infections, and has had a negative impact on improving the health of patients who rely on physicians, nurses and other ancillary staff who have direct contact with them. Fortunately, an introduction of a new product has been able to change the statistical data with low compliance rate for hand hygiene. Some facilities have introduced the use of alcohol-based hand rubs as an alternative to the conventional handwashing techniques to help decrease the rate of nosocomial infections. There are several factors that indicate a better efficacy rate with using hand rubs versus handwashing. Studies have shown that health care workers have listed barriers and constraints that prevent them from practicing proper hand hygiene; therefore, leading to a low compliance rate. The effect of this low compliance rate leads to longer hospital stays, the development of resistant bacterial infections, and consequently a higher mortality rate among the patients. Research suggests that using alcohol based hand-rubbing solution is more effective in preventing nosocomial infection versus standard hand washing with antiseptic soap because healthcare staff are more compliant with using an alcohol based rubbing solution, consumes less time than standard hand washing practices, and it is readily available throughout the hospitals.

One of the reasons why...
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