Touchless functions, signal colours and smart technologies are all components of a hand hygiene dispenser that will provide optimal medical hand hygiene in the long term.
However, not every hand disinfectant dispenser is the same. There are several components of a dispenser that can have a significant impact on hand hygiene compliance and thus contribute significantly to patient safety. Deciding on what components are most important can be a challenging task.
Hand hygiene that stands out
Stimulating colours are used in many applications in everyday life. Red stop signs or orange warning vests, for example, increase our attention in road traffic. And also in the context of hand hygiene, eye-catching signal colours increase the awareness of disinfectant dispensers among hospital staff, patients and guests. Studies prove that striking dispenser colours can increase compliance by up to six percent. 
Touch-free operation: hygienic and convenient
An often underestimated component to an ideal dispenser system is touchless operation. The sensor technology has two decisive advantages. It not only effectively prevents cross-contamination, but also demonstrably improves hand hygiene. Studies show that automatic hygiene dispensers can increase hand disinfection by up to 50 percent per patient each day. 
Networked dispensers improve patient protection
“What you can’t measure, you can’t improve”. This statement can be easily applied to hand hygiene as electronic monitoring systems offer the possibility of analyzing hygiene behaviour in detail and help professionals to develop needs-based training courses. Dispenser-integrated components record each individual activation fully automatically and continuously. Valid data is available “24/7” and is without observer bias.
The Evangelische Krankenhaus Lippstadt (EvK) uses all of these building blocks in its comprehensive hygiene concept and thus plays a pioneering role in infection prevention. This is especially helpful in hygiene-sensitive areas of the clinic, as the concept actively contributes to the sustainable improvement of hand hygiene.
“We deliberately opted for a striking dispenser colour and sensor-controlled operation in order to positively influence the topic of hand disinfection. With the help of intelligent dispensers, we can locate optimisation potentials promptly and adapt training courses much better to the situation.”Jan-Henrick Wischer, specialist nurse for hospital hygiene and infection prevention at the EvK
In addition, the Westphalian hospital relies on disposable pumps, which are disposed of together with the empty disinfectant container after use. This completely eliminates the need for resource-intensive preparation of the dosing pumps and long-term contamination is effectively prevented. In addition, the entire dispenser system complies with the latest KRINKO recommendations.
All in all, this has resulted in an optimum disinfectant dispenser.
 Scheithauer et al.: P110: Influence of signal coloured hand disinfectant dispensers on compliance at an intensive care unit. Antimicrobial Resistance and Infection Control 2013 2(Suppl 1):P110.
 Scheithauer, S., Haefner, H., Koch, A., Lemmen, S. Increase of alcoholic hand disinfection performance due to new touchless dispensers. Abstracts of 21st ECCMID/27th