Infection control- hand washing

Topics: Infection, Bacteria, Hand washing Pages: 3 (698 words) Published: July 22, 2006
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Based on safe infection control techniques using ADPIE (Assessment, Diagnosis, Planning, Implementation, Evaluation)

These will be written up to demonstrate the links between practice and the supporting theory.

Direct observation (2): Infection control.


Hand washing is extremely important in clinical areas, as it reduces the risk of infections. Infections are caused by organisms which invade the host's defence mechanisms. Effective hand washing can reduce the risk of infections occurring and protect the client. Patients have a right to be protected from infections and nurses have a duty to safeguard the well being of those patients (King 1998).

The NMC code of professional conduct (2004) also states, 'you should act to identify and minimise the risk to patients and clients'. Therefore protecting the patient is a priority and should be achieved to the highest standard possible.

Washing hands is a vital procedure which should be undertaken after every patient contact (DoH 2001 a). Even brief contact can cause millions of colony forming units to the hand (Gould 1993), thus hand washing being the essence to reduce patients becoming infected.


When assisting the client with eating, my hands became visible soiled and therefore had to be washed, as recommended in the nursing times. My hands became visible soiled with food particles and body fluid (saliva), and therefore had to be washed immediately after feeding the client. Saliva can contain infections which can be transferred from one client to another. Ineffective hand washing techniques can mean that hands are still colonized with bacteria.


I had to ensure my hands did not become re-contaminated throughout the washing and drying process.

I located the foot operated bin, as this reduced the risk of my hands becoming re-contaminated, as the bins surface can contain micro-organisms.

I had removed my watch and all my rings as this...
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