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Improving Hand Hygiene

The Case for Improving Hand Hygiene and Use of Gloves among Health Care Workers

1. Transmission of health-care-associate pathogens most often occurs via the contaminated hands of health care workers.  Accordingly, hand hygiene has long been considered one of the most important infection control measures for preventing health-care-associated infections.

A. True

B. False


The Hand Hygiene Intervention Package

2. Which of the following is a component of the hand hygiene intervention package and is a critical aspect of a multidimensional hand hygiene program?

A. Demonstrate knowledge

B. Demonstrate competence

C. Enable staff

D. All of the above


1. Clinical staff, including new hires and trainees, understand key elements of hand hygiene practice (demonstrate knowledge)

3. Which have been shown to be more effective in reducing the number of viable bacteria and viruses on hands, require less time to use, can be made more accessible at the point of care, and cause less hand irritation and dryness with repeated use?

A. Gloves

B. Handwashings

C. Alcohol-based hand rubs

D. None of the above


2. Clinical staff, including new hires and trainees, use appropriate technique when cleansing their hands (demonstrate competency)

4. How much time is necessary for competent hand rubbing and/or handwashing?

A. At least 15 seconds

B. At least 30 seconds

C. At least 45 seconds

D. At least 60 seconds


3. Alcohol-based hand rub and gloves are available at the point of care (enable staff)

5. Placing alcohol-based hand rub dispensers near the point of care has been associated with increased compliance by health care workers with recommended hand hygiene procedures.

A. True

B. False


6. If single-use gloves are used, they are required to be sterile, as non-sterile gloves have numerous pathogenic microorganisms when cultured.

A. True

B. False


4. Hand hygiene is performed and gloves are used appropriately as recommended by CDC’s Standard Precautions (verify competency, monitor compliance, and provide feedback)

7. All of the following are considered potentially infectious and require gloves to be worn, except for:

A. Nonintact skin

B. Sweat

C. Mucous membranes

D. Gloves should be worn for all of the above


How to Begin Improvement in Your Organization

8. The person who will ensure that high levels of performance are maintained and help to troubleshoot key aspects of the hand hygiene program if the compliance rate falls, is known as:

A. An executive

B. Head of the clinical department

C. A process owner

D. Infection control team leader


2. The percentage of caregivers who perform all three key hand hygiene procedures correctly

9. Health-care providers should have their nails trimmed to:

A. Less than 1/4 inch

B. Less than 1/2 inch

C. Less than 3/4 inch

D. None of the above


4. The percentage of patient encounters in which there is compliance by health care workers with all components of appropriate hand hygiene and glove practices

10. Self-reporting by personnel or patients is a reliable measure of compliance.

A. True

B. False


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