Hand hygiene in healthcare settings is of the upmost important. The CDC describes this practice as “simple yet effective” in the fight against healthcare-associated infections.
Medical practitioners and staff can take a variety of precautions when it comes to hand hygiene. First, staff should abide by proper hand washing practices at all times. This is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of contact transmission. In addition to hand washing, staff should utilize a hand sanitizer to further minimize the risk of transmission.
In the operating room and imaging suites, radiologists and other imaging professionals should abide by the same strict hand hygiene protocols. Depending on the nature of the exam or procedure, practitioners should opt to use sterile or non-sterile gloves to create an additional barrier of protection between themselves and the patient. This is especially important in surgical settings where the sterile environment must be preserved.
However, the use of medical gloves does not replace hand washing and the use of hand sanitizer. All three of these components of proper hand hygiene should be applied in tandem to ensure the maximum level of infection prevention and control is achieved.