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Monitoring Hand Hygiene Compliance of Health Care Workers

Comparing the efficacy of hand hygiene monitoring systems compared to direct monitoring for increasing compliance in the hospital setting can help reduce the incidence of hospital associated infections (HCAIs), cross contamination, and reduce overal costs. This research aims to identify the most efficient way of monitoring hand hygiene with respect to clinician autonomy and buy-in from those in leadership roles. Initiation of electronic monitoring systems (EMS) aims to solve the problem of HCAIs by decreasing hand hygiene noncompliance, the primary measure of prevention. EMS constists of sensors, alcohol/soap dispenser monitors, and badges. It will detect use of sinks and sanitizer stations upon entry and exit of patient rooms and record it to a database. Research in this study consists of information recorded in these data bases, compared to direct observation data. Results from these studies have shown that EMS is successful in promoting and improving hand hygeine compliance. These results imply that EMS is entirely accurate and accounts for specific instances of hand washing that arent monitored, such as desk sanitizer and bathroom sinks. It also does not account for instances where the user is not standing directly in front of the dispenser for a certain duration of time; aka “fly-by” events. These systems implement a culture change to hospital units and deny workers the aunotnomy and trust to utilize their better judgment and integrity. Additional education and tools should be developed and utilized to promote prolonged and significant change in behavior and compliance.

Maguire Tierney '23   
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