Why Don’t We Wash Our Hands?

Courtesy of the SMACC Podcast, my hand hygiene talk from SMACC Chicago has just been released… Enjoy!

Hand hygiene is widely regarded as the bedrock for the prevention of healthcare associated infections (HAIs). HAIs are among the biggest killers in modern medicine. Yet, hand hygiene compliance among healthcare workers remains woefully poor.

Why can’t we learn the lessons that Ignaz Semmelweis taught us nearly 150 years ago? If we can’t teach intelligent healthcare workers to wash their hands properly, what hope do we have as medical educators? This is both a patient safety and a medical education priority. Our patients’ lives are at risk and they deserve better. So, how can we change our patient’s microbiological cultures? By changing our culture.

The power, it seems, is in our hands.


References and Links


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Critical Care

Compendium

Chris is an Intensivist and ECMO specialist at the Alfred ICU in Melbourne. He is also the Innovation Lead for the Australian Centre for Health Innovation at Alfred Health and Clinical Adjunct Associate Professor at Monash University. He is a co-founder of the Australia and New Zealand Clinician Educator Network (ANZCEN) and is the Lead for the ANZCEN Clinician Educator Incubator programme. He is on the Board of Directors for the Intensive Care Foundation and is a First Part Examiner for the College of Intensive Care Medicine. He is an internationally recognised Clinician Educator with a passion for helping clinicians learn and for improving the clinical performance of individuals and collectives.

After finishing his medical degree at the University of Auckland, he continued post-graduate training in New Zealand as well as Australia’s Northern Territory, Perth and Melbourne. He has completed fellowship training in both intensive care medicine and emergency medicine, as well as post-graduate training in biochemistry, clinical toxicology, clinical epidemiology, and health professional education.

He is actively involved in in using translational simulation to improve patient care and the design of processes and systems at Alfred Health. He coordinates the Alfred ICU’s education and simulation programmes and runs the unit’s education website, INTENSIVE.  He created the ‘Critically Ill Airway’ course and teaches on numerous courses around the world. He is one of the founders of the FOAM movement (Free Open-Access Medical education) and is co-creator of litfl.com, the RAGE podcast, the Resuscitology course, and the SMACC conference.

His one great achievement is being the father of two amazing children.

On Twitter, he is @precordialthump.

| INTENSIVE | RAGE | Resuscitology | SMACC

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