Estimation of mean number of daily hand hygiene procedures per patient can represent an effective and easy understandable method to evaluate adherence. Experience in a tertiary care pediatric hospital of Northern Italy


Healthcare associated infections
Infection control
Hand hygiene
Hand washing


Introduction. Hand decontamination with alcohol-based antiseptic agents is considered  the best practise to reduce healthcare associated infections.

Methods. We present a new method to monitor hand hygiene, introduced in a tertiary care pediatric hospital inNorthern Italy, which estimates the mean number of daily hand decontamination procedures performed per patient. The total amount of isopropyl alcohol and chlorhexydine solution supplied in a trimester to each hospital ward was put in relation with the number of hospitalization days, and expressed as liters/1000 hospitalization-days (World Health Organization standard), and the mean number of patients hospitalized and expressed as mean estimated number of hand hygiene procedures per patient per day (new method).

Results. The two methods had  similar performance for estimating  the adherence to correct hand disinfection procedures. The new method identified wards and/or periods with high or low  adherence to the procedure and indicated where to perform interventions and their effectiveness. The new methods could result easy-to understand also for non-infection control experts.

Conclusion. This method can help non-infection control experts to understand adherence to correct hand- hygiene procedures and improve quality standards.


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