June 25, 2007 — ST. PAUL, MN — Ecolab Inc. announced today a new Hand Hygiene Monitoring Compliance Program for hospitals and healthcare facilities. The Ecolab Hand Hygiene Compliance Monitoring Program provides a multi-intervention approach that combines effective hand hygiene products, a step-by-step implementation process, patient empowerment education and training materials, ongoing measurement, and benchmarking to increase and sustain hand hygiene compliance. According to the Centers for Disease Control, proper hand hygiene is the single most effective method for preventing healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in hospitals.
“Simply put, proper hand hygiene enables hospitals to provide better patient care and to reduce costs,” says Tim Mulhere, vice president and general manager of healthcare at Ecolab. “The Ecolab Hand Hygiene Compliance Monitoring Program provides all the tools and resources hospitals need to drive hand hygiene compliance and reduce healthcare-associated infections.”
Elements of the Ecolab Hand Hygiene Compliance Monitoring Program include:
- Patient empowerment — Patient empowerment programs increase awareness of the importance of hand hygiene and encourage patients and their families to ask their healthcare provider to wash or sanitize their hands prior to any direct contact. Ecolab has developed a comprehensive set of materials, including brochures, posters, buttons, and a video, under a program entitled “It’s OK To Ask,” that encourage patients to actively participate in their care. According to recent studies (1999-2006) in the American Journal of Infection Control and Journal of Hospital Infection Control, patient empowerment and measurement have been shown to increase and sustain compliance on average 56 percent.
- Measurement — Measurement of compliance data establishes an accurate, current baseline compliance rate against which progress can be tracked. Ongoing measurement and reporting further supports compliance by enabling hospitals to objectively measure the progress of programs and promote improvements.
- Benchmarking — Confidential reporting of data and analysis helps hospitals to validate their hand hygiene program as it grows. In addition, ongoing compliance can be compared against data from similar sized hospitals and units including in