Safety Stand-down Improves Hand Hygiene Compliance

Advance Healthcare Network of Nurses features an article by Dennis Cunningham, MD, who reports that hand hygiene compliance rates soared after implementing a hospital-wide initiative at Nationwide Children's Hospital. Since 2008, the healthcare institution's Zero Hero patient safety program has focused on reducing, preventing and eliminating any type of complications that occur, with the primary goal of improving patient care and eradicating preventable harm.

However, Cunningham notes that during "secret shopper" observations, it was discovered that hand hygiene compliance rates were consistently below 60 percent. "We brainstormed solutions and looked outside of healthcare for the answer," Cunningham writes, ".In doing so, we discovered a best practice used in the military and followed their model to institute a safety stand-down. A 'stand-down' is when everyone stops what they're doing, especially if they're doing something wrong (in our case, not washing their hands), so that the issue can be immediately addressed with frontline staff and leadership."

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Source: Advance Healthcare Network of Nurses