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National Hand Hygiene Ireland Essay Sample 

The following essay sample work shall highlight the hand hygiene guidelines in Ireland, indications for hand hygiene, HSE 5 moments of hand hygiene, hand hygiene while delivering clinical care, the technique to maintain the hand hygiene, prevention of any skin damage due to washing of hands and hand hygiene for any surgical preparation.

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Hand hygiene ensures the reduction of transmission of pathogens and outbreaks of infection related to any health-associated incidence. It ensures the prevention of the spread of infection in healthcare and social services.

The National HCAI and AMR Clinical Programme and Clinical Advisory Group have introduced initiatives to improve hand hygiene. It is being supported by-

  • The WHO in 2009 introduced, “My 5 Moments of Hand Hygiene Model.”
  • In 2009, HIQA introduced the Standards for Infection Prevention and Control which is completely dedicated to hand hygiene.
  • In 2010, the Irish National Hand Hygiene guidelines were first developed.
  • In June 2011, a Public acute hospital was undertaken by HSE National Hand Hygiene Observational Audits twice a year. The results are published to document the status of hand hygiene.
  • “Clean Hands Saves Lives” campaign was introduced by the WHO.

The purpose of the guidelines is to help the visitors, patients, public, healthcare professionals, etc. These guidelines for hand hygiene is delivered in the health care sector in Ireland as part of the infection prevention control and patient safety strategy.

HSE 5 Moments of Hand Hygiene 

According to the WHO guidelines, there are 5 moments of hand hygiene and they are following:-

  • Immediately before any exposure or direct physical contact with a patient while taking care of him.
  • Immediately before a clean/ aseptic procedure.
  • Immediately after any physical contact with any external fluids, excretion, mucous, open wound dressings, infected skin, etc.
  • Immediately after any direct physical contact with patients who requires care.
  • Immediately after the contact with objects and equipment in the immediate environment of the patient.

These 5 moments of hand hygiene guidelines of WHO can be applied in the home-based setting, outpatient settings, and long-term care facilities.

Hands must be disinfected after using the toilet, before preparing any meal, before any medication, and when they are soiled and dirty. They must be cleaned when gloves have to be worn and after their removal.

Hand Hygiene while Delivering a Clinical Care

There are certain hand hygiene rules that need to be followed while care services are provided to the patients. Some of the rules to be followed are:-

  • Removing every hand jewelry, rings, wristwatches from the arms and wrists. Keeping wrists bare.
  • Cutting the nails short so that it does not injure anyone and does not create any infection.
  • Any nail enhancement or jewelry should not be there while delivering care to the patient.
  • Cuts or open wounds must be covered with the help of a bandage or a waterproof dressing so that it does not enhance the infection.
  • Hands to be disinfected and sanitized properly and there should be no trace of chemicals on the skin of hands and nails.

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Techniques to Maintain the Hand Hygiene

  • When the hands are washed with alcohol hand rub the instructions of manufacturers must be followed before the application. It must not be directly contacted with the soiled hands. Hands must be rubbed as long as it does not evaporate and leaves the hands dry.
  • When the hands are washed with soap and running water it must cover all the surfaces of the hands and wrists.
  • Hands must be rubbed for a minimum of 15 seconds and be washed thoroughly. They must be dried with the help of a paper towel and such disposable paper towels must be disposed of into the nonrisk waste bin.

Prevention of any Skin Damage due to Washing of Hands

  • The healthcare staff and general public must be made aware of the damaging effects of hand hygiene products and ways to reduce the skin damage risks associated with them.
  • Hands must not be washed with hot water, hand rub and soap must not be used together at the same time as it would leave the hands dry.
  • A moisturizing and emollient cream must be used after every hand wash with soap. They must not be rubbed rather be gently patted into the hands.
  • An occupational healthcare team or a general practitioner should be consulted if there is any skin rash or irritation due to any product used in the healthcare settings.
  • Wet gloves must not be used for a longer time.
  • Alternative hand hygiene products must be used by healthcare who are prone to allergy or skin reaction issues to any products in the healthcare unit.

Hand Hygiene for any Surgical Preparation 

  • Antimicrobial soap or an alcohol-based hand rub must be used before wearing surgical gloves.
  • Nails must be properly cleaned and cut and areas around them must be paid special attention to.
  • A sterile towel should be used for drying the hands and jewelry must be removed from the wrists and arms before wearing gloves.
  • Hands and forearms to be dried properly before performing any surgery.

Quick Writing Assistance for the Irish University Students! 

The above essay sample work mentions National Hand Hygiene in Ireland.

Healthcare QQI Level 5, Child Health and Wellbeing QQI Level 5, Infection Prevention and Control QQI Level 5, Workplace Food Safety and Hygiene QQI Level 5, Hand Hygiene (online course)students can read this sample and can benefit from this to write further on similar topics in the future.

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