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Hand Hygiene and Safe Injection Practices Come Up Short in Study

In a study of 15 outpatient facilities, researchers from the University of New Mexico and New Mexico Health Department found significant variances in following accepted protocols for hand hygiene and safe injection practices.

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LEAH-ANNE HOMPSONHEMERA / THINKSTOCK
LEAH-ANNE HOMPSONHEMERA / THINKSTOCK

In a study of 15 outpatient facilities, researchers from the University of New Mexico and New Mexico Health Department found significant variances in following accepted protocols for hand hygiene and safe injection practices. Published in the American Journal of Infection Control, the study, “Using Medical Student Observers of Infection Prevention, Hand Hygiene, and Injection Safety in Outpatient Settings: A Cross- Sectional Survey,” notes that while the facilities had proper protocols in place, staff members failed to follow hand hygiene and safe injection practices about a third of the time.

More specifically, safe injection practices were only followed 66% of the time, while hand hygiene fared slightly worse, with a 63% compliance rate. “These findings,” the authors conclude, “highlight the need for ongoing quality improvement initiatives regarding infection prevention policies and practices in outpatient settings.”

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