Blog

Home > Health Guide > Health and Fitness

The Importance of Hand Hygiene in Care Homes

Good hand hygiene is one of the best ways to prevent the spreading of germs and diseases, something that is particularly important in public spaces where there are lots of people. Care Homes and Hospitals are especially at risk in this regard because they are filled with people that are more vulnerable to illnesses such as the Norovirus, which is already a big concern amongst medical professionals. Consequently, a good hand hygiene routine is a top priority amongst those who work with the sick and the elderly.

It’s strange to think that something as mundane was washing your hands could be such a key aspect to good health, but the facts don’t lie. We come into contact with all kinds of things during the day, from handling food to touching other people, meaning that we regularly come into contact with bacteria, some of which may be harmful. In a hospital or care home, this can be incredibly dangerous; healthcare professionals are in physical contact with medical equipment and patients all throughout the day. There’s also the possibility of the infection spreading outside of the contained area if it affects a staff member.

As well as the increased risk of spread infections, poor hand hygiene can also have a negative impact on healthcare expenses. Spreading infections causes increases in costs for cleaning and can often lead to expensive staff absences. Then there are the costs for fighting an infection that could have easily been prevented through more diligent hand hygiene.

There are plenty of guides on keeping your hands clean available. For example, Care Shop offers a simple regime for good hand hygiene that’s easy to follow and adhere to. The three step rare as follows:

  1. Wash – Wash your hands carefully and thoroughly.
  2. Sanitise – Using a good santizier will reduce bacteria, thereby lowering the risk of infection.
  3. Moisturise – This will help to keep your skin in a healthy condition.

This should be done regularly, but particularly after things such as visiting the toilet, handling food and so on.

Hand sanitizers are also a useful tool in hospitals and care homes because they offer a convenient way to maintain good hand hygiene. They’re usually filled with an alcohol-based rub and come through a dispenser; all you need to do is It’s impractical to find a bathroom and wash your hands every time you need to clean them, so they work well on a day-to-day basis. However, workers in hospitals and care homes should be aware that this is not a substitute method to washing with soap and water; using a dispenser will not be enough if your hands are visibly soiled, for example.

It’s not hard to see why good hand hygiene is so important in places like care homes and hospitals. Keeping your hands clean in such environments is one of the key ways to positively fight the spreading of infections and diseases and can significantly save on healthcare costs. These days it’s much easier to keep up a solid hand hygiene regime as well, so there’s no excuse for standards to slip.