Thursday, May 3, 2012

Glove Usage and Hand Hygiene Compliance

I am currently researching and writing a review article on contact precautions and the use of gowns and gloves for the control of drug resistant pathogens.

One concept that I have explored is the negative impact of glove use on hand hygiene. Here is a provocative article titled Wearing gloves: the worst enemy of hand hygiene? Another article published in the American Journal of Infection Control, by the same lead author, investigated the impact of improved glove usage on hand hygiene. Quite simply, greater compliance with gloving does not necessarily result in improvements in hand hygiene. There are dirty hands in the gloves.

My opinion? The promotion of glove use must be accompanied by concurrent and ongoing hand hygiene education. In our controlled trial of universal gloving, hand hygiene adherence was sustained during universal gloving by ongoing hand hygiene education and adherence monitoring.

The message is rather simple: wash you hands before and after donning gloves. There are no shortcuts.

1 comment:

  1. Medical practitioners should not leave everything to the gloves they wear and sterilize properly before starting on any operation to be sure that the patient won’t suffer from contamination. We never know how fast germs can spread throughout our system, and as far as we know, cross-contamination has very dire consequences.