New CDC Campaign Looks to Dispel Myths About Hand Hygiene

May 20, 2016 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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​Some healthcare providers clean their hands less than half as frequently as they should, according to a new hand hygiene campaign launched by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). CDC's Clean Hands Count campaign uses "dramatic images and messages" to dispel myths and promote healthcare providers' adherence to CDC hand hygiene recommendations, while encouraging patients to do the same. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are more effective than soap and water at reducing bacterial count on hands, CDC said, except during a Clostridium difficile outbreak. Alcohol-based sanitizers do not cause antibiotic resistance, CDC added. The sanitizer should cover the hands entirely and hands should stay wet for 20 seconds. The fingertips, thumbs, and areas between the fingers are the most common places providers miss while washing their hands.

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