Publicly Reported Indicators
Hand Hygiene Compliance
Why is hand hygiene so important?
hygiene is an important practice for health care providers and has a significant
impact on reducing the spread of infections in hospitals. Hand hygiene is a
different way of thinking about safety and patient care and involves everyone in
the hospital, including patients and health care providers. Effective
hand hygiene practices in hospitals play a key role in improving patient and
provider safety, and in preventing the spread of health care-associated
How will the public reporting of hand hygiene compliance
affect compliance among health care professionals?
The goal of
public reporting hand hygiene compliance is to achieve an overall assessment of
whether compliance rates are improving over time. It is normal for rates to vary
from hospital to hospital. There are many factors that will improve hand hygiene
compliance. Mandatory public reporting is one element. Certainly the increasing
recent attention on the issue as well as the provincial government’s
multifaceted hand hygiene program called Just Clean Your Hands are important to
ensuring effective hand hygiene at the right times.
the Hand Hygiene Compliance Rate calculated?
Ontario hospitals are
posting their hand hygiene compliance rates as percentages for time periods
identified by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, using the following
# of times hand hygiene performed x 100
# of observed
hand hygiene indications
These percentages also reflect:
hand hygiene before initial patient/patient environment contact by combined
health care provider type (e.g., nurses, allied health professionals,
(ii) hand hygiene after patient/patient environment
contact by combined health care provider type (e.g., nurses, allied health
professionals, physicians, etc.)
Hospitals are to collect at least
200 observations for every 100 in patient beds. At the Royal Victoria Hospital
we collected over 800 observations.
Safety at Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre
remains the most important priority for the Royal Victoria Regional Health
Centre and this involves ensuring that patients are not at risk for contracting
We have a number of practices in place
to help prevent and control infections, including a comprehensive hand hygiene
program. As of April 30, 2009, all Ontario hospitals are required to annually
post their hand hygiene compliance rates to further promote accountability and
transparency within the health system.
RVH strongly supports the provincial government’s new
public reporting initiative because we believe it will inspire improved
performance, enhance patient safety, and strengthen the public’s confidence in
Ontario’s hospitals. Public reporting of Hand Hygiene Compliance and other
indicators is another, helpful measure to ensure the care provided to our
patients is even safer, and improves over time.
patients do to help improve their own safety?
Hand hygiene involves
everyone in the hospital, including patients. Hand cleaning is one of the best
ways you and your health care team can prevent the spread of many infections.
Patients and their visitors should also practice good hand hygiene before and
after entering patient rooms.