Overlook the simple things, and all the technology and medication in the world won’t keep patients—or healthcare providers—healthy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention just launched a campaign called Clean Hands Count, aimed at preventing healthcare-associated infections through basic hygiene practices in all healthcare settings, including urgent care. One common misconception the program aims to correct: that antibiotic hand sanitizers are the safest. Rather, use of antibiotic-based cleansers increases the risk of antibiotic resistance; instead, the CDC recommends alcohol-based solutions. Such cleansers have also been shown to cause less irritation than frequent handwashing with soap and water, according to the CDC. While data relating to office-based medical visits are lacking, roughly 722,000 healthcare-associated infections occur in U.S. hospitals annually.
CDC: Keep It Clean in the Clinic!