May 5th – the day each year where hospitals from around the world join the World Health Organization (WHO) to raise awareness for the important role hand hygiene plays in reducing the spread of infection in healthcare settings. Last year, more than 17,000 hospitals in 171 nations joined together in support of the WHO’s efforts to increase awareness for the importance of hand hygiene in hospitals, and I hope your hospital or healthcare facility will join them this year.
The WHO SAVE LIVES: Clean Your Hands annual campaign was launched in 2009 to demonstrate that hand hygiene is one of the most important and first steps you can take to reduce healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and enhance patient safety. This campaign also serves as a platform to demonstrate the world’s commitment to hand hygiene in healthcare.
GOJO is one of the founding members of the WHO initiative, Private Organizations for Patient Safety (POPS). POPS allows the WHO and private organizations to collaboratively work towards reducing HAIs by improving hand hygiene education and awareness. HAIs complicate between 5 and 10 percent of admissions in acute care hospitals in industrialized countries, and in developing countries, the risk is two to twenty times higher and the proportion of infected patients frequently exceeds 25 percent. This is why I encourage your hospital to participate.
If you are a healthcare worker or healthcare facility, GOJO, along with the WHO, asks for your involvement in this worthwhile campaign. As May 5th approaches, you can show your healthcare facility’s support and commitment to the WHO campaign in the following ways:
Together, we can continue to raise awareness for hand hygiene and take action to better safeguard the health of patients and reduce incidences of HAIs.