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Patients and Visitors Get a Lesson in Hand Hygiene

Date: Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Time: 10am
Venue: Inside main entrance, West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds
Photo: Display on alcohol hand rubs featuring a giant bottle of hand rub and patients and visitors being shown how to use the new hand rubs available at the entrance to every ward and at every patient's bedside

Ecolab, West Suffolk Hospital's provider of alcohol hand rubs, will be showing visitors to the hospital the new hand rubs that are available at patient bedsides and at the entrance to wards.

At the beginning of June, the hospital signed up to join the national Clean Your Hands Campaign. The hospital demonstrated to the campaign organiser the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA) that staff take infections seriously and are committed to keeping our patients as safe and healthy as possible.

The campaign focuses on raising awareness of hand hygiene among all staff, patients and visitors and encouraging the use of alcohol hand rubs.

As part of the campaign West Suffolk Hospital is:

  • Asking members of staff to wear a "Its OK to ask" sticker which invites members of the public to ask whether they have washed their hands.

  • Alcohol hand rubs at every patientís bedside and at the entrance to every ward

  • A new system to ensure that empty bottles of hand rub are automatically replaced

  • A new audit system to monitor the usage of hand rubs in every clinical area

  • Making infection control link nurses in each clinical area responsible for continually updating and ensuring posters on hand hygiene, provided by the National Patient Safety Agency, are displayed in ward and clinical areas.

The hospitalís provider of hand rubs will also be giving out leaflets on handwashing to members of the public. In the backdrop will be a giant bottle of hand rub.

Clean Your Hands project lead and infection control nurse Jill Cerny said: "This is part of our ongoing campaign to educate the public and our staff on hand hygiene and ensure that members of the public feel comfortable using the hand rubs on the wards.

"We ask that people use these hand rubs whenever they visit a relative or friend in our hospital. You don't have to ask a member of staff for permission. Just go ahead and use them each time you enter the ward."

To find out more about what we are doing to combat infections in hospital you can ask to speak to the hospitalís infection control team or our Patient Advice and Liaison Service. (PALS). Infection control can be contacted on 01284 713688. PALS can be contacted on 01284 712555.

Further information about the NPSA Clean Your Hands Campaign can be found at



West Suffolk Hospitals NHS Trust