Clean Care is Safer Care

5 May 2014

Are you ready to prevent the spread of antimicrobial resistant germs?

For 5 May 2014, WHO will issue a number of tools and proposes a number of activities to support the call to action for this year’s SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands campaign - ’No action today; no cure tomorrow – make the WHO 5 Moments for Hand Hygiene part of protecting your patients from resistant germs’. Once again, a WHO call for action on or around 5 May 2014 in order to highlight the importance of hand hygiene best practices to prevent antimicrobial resistance (AMR) spread and keep this patient safety action high on the agenda in every country!

Two of the proposed 5 May 2014 activities are global surveys:

  • A Global Prevalence Survey on Multidrug-Resistant Organisms (MDROs) – laboratories in health-care facilities around the world are asked to submit data from in-patient clinical blood and urine laboratory specimens, related to five selected key multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs). This survey and full instructions will be launched in February 2014, with survey completion requested during one week in March 2014.
  • A Point Prevalence Global Survey on use of Surgical Antibiotic Prophylaxis (SAP) – surgical wards in health-care facilities around the world are asked to submit data on SAP in surgical patients of one or more wards on a given day. This survey and full instructions will be launched in February 2014, with survey completion requested on any one day between 15 and 31 March 2014.

Survey deadline extended to 3 May 2014, while to be included in the preliminary results that will be announced on 5 May 2014, data should be submitted no later than 13 April 2014. A fuller report is planned for August 2014.

Why should you take part in these surveys?

  • Such data collection has never been done before on a global scale!
  • Together we need to progress our understanding of global AMR information.
  • Greater understanding will support everyone to better manage the burden of AMR, patient infections and care, as well as costs.

The links below will take you to the information on how to complete these surveys – thank you in advance for planning to take part and for encouraging others to do so.

Other proposed activities can be undertaken at local level in support of 5 May, to highlight the power of the WHO 5 Moments for Hand Hygiene as a barrier in stopping the spread of resistant organisms to patients and staff.

  • Take cultures of health-care worker hands by:
    • selecting a number of wards/units and seeking permission for the exercise;
    • establishing if there are enough resources within the laboratory to undertake the exercise, i.e. agar plates, staff, space within the incubators;
    • choosing a day to ask a range of different staff to place their fingers on the agar plates, returning these to the laboratory;
    • gathering the cultured plates from the lab and presenting back to staff how hands are contaminated and how the 5 Moments stop patient harm whatever germs are picked up during daily activities.
  • Contaminate an area in the health-care environment with ‘glow powder’ to highlight where it spreads to over time though the vehicle of hands:
    • select a number of wards/units and seek permission for the exercise, assuring anonymity of staff;
    • establish if there are resources to undertake the exercise, i.e. staff available, ‘glow powder’ and hand held UV light for tracking powder spread;
    • choose a day to spread the ‘glow powder’ in an identified area of a ward(s)/unit(s) during a quiet period, to not interfere with clinical activities/staff, e.g. a dirty/sluice room and/or a central desk area;
    • return to the ward(s)/unit(s) at an agreed number of hours later and use the hand held UV light starting in the source area and holding it over a number of commonly used different areas/items in the ward/unit, e.g. patient bed frames, patient monitors; you can also include staff hands, uniforms, etc;
    • note the number and types of places where the ‘glow powder’ has been found and prepare a report for the facility – this report should focus on where the powder spread to and how Moments 1 and 2 for Hand Hygiene can ensure patient safety whatever is picked up on hands in the environment.

(Please note WHO cannot provide ‘glow powder’ or any other resources suggested in these exercises and it is recommended that those with infection control expertise undertake these activities to ensure safety)

What else is WHO providing to support 5 May 2014?

  • A 5 May activities prompt list to help you plan – issue February 2014.
  • A new poster highlighting the role of hand hygiene to combat AMR – issue in February 2014.
  • A new poster (English, French, Spanish) featuring the importance of Moment 5 for Hand Hygiene linked to environment contamination by MDROs – issue in March 2014.
  • Tips for 5 May social media messaging – issue March 2014.
  • A new diagram to show the WHO 5 Moments for Hand Hygiene in relation to risk assessment for prevention of catheter-associated urinary tract infections – issue in April 2014.
  • A new screensaver – issue end of April 2014 - for you to launch on or around 5 May to highlight this year’s campaign celebrations.
  • Tips for patients on hand hygiene (emphasis on Moments 1 and 2 for Hand Hygiene) related to prevention of organism, including MDRO, spread, and on appropriate antibiotic use – issue in April 2014.
  • A literature review of MDROs and the relationship with hand hygiene – summary issue April 2014.
  • Access to a free teleclass on 5 May by Professor Didier Pittet

Many of these resources are not just useful on or around 5 May; plan to use them as part of your infection prevention strategy/annual programme or work.

What is WHO’s campaign registration goal for 2014?

  • New registrations from at least 5 new countries – our overall aim at least one registered facility in every member state! (view registration numbers here)
  • Increased registrations in countries with low numbers (at least up to 5 per country) and registrations in all countries in some regions where just a few countries have no registrations yet!
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