Multimodal intervention to increase hand hygiene compliance


The aim of this Safe Clinical Practice (SCP) is to reduce the number of health care associated infections (HCAI) by the use of multimodal interventions in order to increase hand hygiene compliance.

The primary measure for the reduction of HCAI and of the spread of antimicrobial resistance is hand hygiene. Although it is well-accepted that hand hygiene is a critical patient safety practice for reducing HCAI, compliance with this practice is often low (AHRQ 2013, Allegranzi et al 2009).

Adherence of health care workers to recommended hand hygiene procedures has been reported as averaging 39% (WHO 2009a). HCAI are a major problem for patient safety and its surveillance and prevention must be a first priority for settings and institutions committed to making health care safer (WHO 2009a). The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) reported that approximately

4 131 000 patients are affected by about 4 544 100 episodes of HCAI every year in Europe. According to these estimates HCAI cause 16 million extra-days of hospital stay and 37 000 attributable deaths annually, but also contribute to an additional 110 000 deaths. Financially, these infections account for approximately € 7 billion per year, including direct costs only (ECDC 2008).

In June 2009 the Council of the European Union adopted a Recommendation on patient safety, with a particular focus on the prevention and control of health care associated infections (2009/C 151/01). In November 2012 a report summarizing the main actions taken at Member State and EU level in regard to this Recommendation was released which can be found here.

For more information have a look at the following links:

Innovator of the SCP and country of originShort description of the SCP and information on implementationStepwise approach to implementationInformation on needed resourcesSummary of evidence for effectivenessReferencesSpecific Tools

PDF version of the information on the SCP Multimodal intervention to increase hand hygiene compliance


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