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Importance of effective hand hygiene 

December 13, 2021

The Commission and the Council of Presidents of Medical Colleges (CPMC) have produced a joint statement on the importance of effective hand hygiene and the responsibility of medical staff to wash their hands and comply with hand washing guidelines.

Hand hygiene compliance data for all healthcare workers is collected across three national audit periods each year and aggregated national data is reported on the Commission’s website. Individual hospital level data is published on the MyHospitals website by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Hand hygiene compliance for medical practitioners has generally improved over the past five years. However, since 2016 the compliance rate for medical practitioners has remained below the national benchmark of 80%.

This new statement highlights the importance of effective hand hygiene, infection prevention and control practices and the impact of these practices on reducing healthcare-associated infections and ensuring patient safety. The statement also provides medical practitioners with strategies they can use as clinical leaders to promote hand hygiene, infection prevention and control, and the prevention of healthcare-associated infections.

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