Dozens of health care workers — doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists and others — touch patients in the hospitals and clinics every day. To protect children from infection, we require that patient care workers thoroughly clean their hands before and after caring for each child.
Hand hygiene means using either alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water, and using the proper hand-hygiene techniques for the appropriate length of time.
At UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco, a team of Infection Control staff, doctors, nurses, therapists, technicians, spiritual care staff, engineers and others created a program to ensure proper hand hygiene.
What does UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco do to ensure proper hand hygiene?
UCSF considers hand hygiene a priority and expects all health care workers to clean their hands every time they go in or out of a patient's hospital or exam room.
Data about hand-hygiene compliance are collected through monitoring, both discreetly and openly, and on video camera in some areas. A daily compliance report is available. When someone fails to follow proper hand hygiene, they are reminded about and coached on the correct techniques.
In fiscal year 2020, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco achieved 95 percent hand-hygiene compliance.
How do you know hand hygiene makes a difference?
UCSF and other institutions have studied the impact of hand hygiene on infection rates. Hand hygiene is one of many measures at UCSF Benioff Children's Hospital San Francisco that have helped reduce the rate of infections such as central line-associated bloodstream infections. Our infection rates continue to decline.