Preventing Infection

Avoiding infections with hip and knee prostheses: The success of the operation also depends on patients’ cooperation

Prof. Dr. Ojan Assadian, President of the Austrian Society for Hospital Hygiene (ÖGKH) and Medical Director at the State Hospital Neunkirchen, was co-author of an expert opinion paper of the "Initiative Sicherheit im OP" (SIOP) on infection prevention in hip and knee endoprosthetics. In an interview, he provides insights into the most important points of the paper.

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Preventing Infection

Disposable gowns: fewer surgical site infections during high-risk procedures

Choosing the optimal surgical gown for each type of surgical procedure is complex. Many aspects including hygienic requirements, wearing comfort, and cost-effectiveness have to be considered, so as to optimise infection control. Recent studies show that disposable surgical gowns could offer better protection during high-risk surgeries.

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Preventing Infection, Processes: Optimisation and Solutions

Preventing retained surgical items: Procedures you can count on

The problem of retained surgical materials after surgery can have severe consequences both for patients and entire medical teams. Evidence-based policies and close monitoring, along with a seamless and clear communication, are essential to enhance patient safety.

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Preventing Infection, Processes: Optimisation and Solutions

“Hand hygiene is always good news for your patients”

Do good and talk about it: In her “Hygiene Communication Concept”, Claudia James, hygiene-specialist and Senior Expert Marketing at Knieler & Team GmbH, explains how communication can improve hand hygiene compliance of physicians and nursing staff. By voicing hand disinfection staff shapes own hygiene behaviour and at the same time gives patients valuable insights into possibilities to participate in their own healing process. In our interview, the expert describes the background to her findings and gives specific instructions for putting these into practice.

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Preventing Infection

Promoting wound healing after surgery by choosing the right dressing

Wound cleansing and the application of adequate phase-oriented wound dressings are an important line of defence against surgical site infections (SSI), a serious complication which affects millions of patients every year. Dressings not only act as a physical barrier to avoid wound contamination but can actively support the healing process.

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Preventing Infection

Double gloving: two-way protection for patients and medical professionals during surgery

Every year more than half a million patients in Europe suffer surgical site infections (SSIs). Wearing two layers of surgical gloves, called double gloving, can reduce the risk of SSI and protects patients as well as healthcare staff. If damage to the top surgical glove occurs, an underglove provides a second barrier to contamination. But are two gloves really better than one? We look at the results of relevant studies.

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Preventing Infection

It’s in your hands: The urgent importance of hand hygiene

Few people have recognised the medical necessity of hand hygiene the way Professor Didier Pittet has for more than a quarter-century. Pittet serves as the director of the Infection Control Programme at the University of Geneva Hospitals and Faculty of Medicine and World Health Organization (WHO Collaborating Centre on Patient Safety); in addition, he is the lead adviser of the WHO’s First Global Patient Safety Challenge: Clean Care is Safer Care. As a global authority in role of healthcare-associated infections (HAI), he gives us an overview of how hand hygiene makes a life-saving difference.

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Preventing Infection

Norovirus in nursing homes: “Raise awareness of effective hygiene measures”

Every year, noroviruses pose considerable challenges to the staff of medical and long-term care facilities, particularly in the months from October to April. Statistics from reporting systems show that children under the age of five and adults over the age of 70 are the most affected. Olaf Stolz is a freelance hygiene specialist and advises care facilities and nursing homes, among others, on hygiene issues. We spoke with him about difficulties as well as solutions when dealing with noroviruses in nursing homes.

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