A NEAS staff member features in the campaign

NEAS Staff Scrub Up Well

NEAS Staff Scrub Up Well

NEAS is again supporting the NHS North East's award winning hand hygiene campaign as it is relaunched this week to encourage all healthcare workers, patients and visitors across the region's NHS to 'scrub up' well.

The number of infections such as MRSA and Clostridium Difficile remain at an all time low in the north east, having reduced by 88% (MRSA) and 69% (Clostridium Difficile) since the original scrub up campaign launched in 2008.

Despite this success, there is still a priority to reduce rates even further and raise everyone's awareness about how to beat the bugs - especially at this time of year when infections like winter vomiting illness and flu are also very common and spread easily.

Everyone has a role to play in stamping out infection and it is extremely important that people clean their hands thoroughly before and after visiting loved ones in hospital, or when visiting their local doctor's surgery or health clinic.

 Professor Stephen Singleton, medical director for NHS North of England, said:

 "Although it may seem like a relatively simple idea, practising good hand hygiene is actually one of the best defences against the spread of infections such as MRSA and Clostridium Difficile in the region's healthcare settings and the campaign emphasises this key message.

 

"Keeping infections to a minimum is a key priority for the health service and I want everyone to understand how serious we are about this issue. This is something chief executives, doctors, nurses, porters, cleaners, managers and all of the region's 73,000 NHS staff have a key role in achieving.

"I would also encourage people in the north east to realise what an important role they too can play in keeping our NHS and patients safe, for instance by cleaning their hands when they visit hospital."

Hand washing is the single most important thing people can do to help to reduce the spread of infection and the region's NHS is urging north easterners to make regular and thorough hand washing part their daily routine, especially:

  • Before eating or handling food
  • After using the toilet
  • After blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
  • After touching animals or animal waste
  • After handling rubbish
  • After changing a nappy
  • Before and after touching an unwell or injured person
  • Before and after visiting a hospital ward or healthcare setting (remember alcohol-based hand gel dispensers are also provided)

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Copyright 2011 North East Ambulance Service Trust

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