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Research

When hand sanitizing opens doors

An Israeli study examined the impact of an innovative hygiene system in a pediatric intensive care unit—with success.

While approaches to improving hand hygiene compliance in hospitals abound, not all of them are highly efficient. A team of researchers from Israel has found an innovative way to rapidly increase the number of hand disinfections performed among hospital staff. These scientists, led by Eli Shapiro, introduced a system in a pediatric intensive care unit at Kaplan Medical Center that consists of a touchless hand sanitizer dispenser that, after use, triggers the door behind it with an electrical signal, causing it to automatically open.

Opening doors with hand sanitizing?

Shapiro and Co. found a significant improvement in disinfection behaviour among hospital staff in pediatric intensive care units after a seven-week study period. From an initial compliance rate of 46.9%, hand hygiene compliance rose to 98.5%. This is an extraordinarily impressive compliance rate and the type of improvement that will make an important contribution to patient safety, especially in hygiene-sensitive areas such as intensive care units.

The automatic door contact opening after hand disinfection improves infection protection in two ways. On top of the sanitization that takes place, no door handles have to be touched when entering the ward, reducing the risk of so-called smear infections. These occur when an infected person transfers pathogens onto a surface, for example via their hands, and these are then picked up by another person.

In the study published in the journal Epidemiology and Infection, more than 600 admissions to the pediatric intensive care unit were registered over the entire period, which always meant that hand disinfection was necessary at the same time. Physicians and staff frequented the ward particularly frequently.

OPHARDT offers innovative hygiene solutions

The hygiene experts at OPHARDT Hygiene offer practical solutions for door contact control using disinfectant dispensers. The touch-free disinfectant dispenser PRAESIDIO® is already equipped to work with an output signal for door contact control and can play a key role in taking hand hygiene compliance to a new level.

And dispenser systems of the popular ingo-man® brand are also available in a version that can trigger automatic door opening. This flagship sanitizer dispensers has been supporting hospital staff and improving hand hygiene for 55 years.


Source on the article “When hand disinfection opens doors”:

Shapiro E, Mahlab-Guri K, Scheier E, Ciobotaro P, Guri A (2022). Perform hand hygiene and the doors will open – the effectiveness of new system implementation on paediatric intensive care unit visitors’ handwashing compliance. Epidemiology and Infection 150, e3, 1-3. https://doi.org/10.1017/ S0950268821002582

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