Child in ICU

  1. Hello. I have a baby girl in ICU, immunodepressed due to medication, on a ventilator, with a nasty pneumonia. She has been in ICU a week. The nurses here are great. They go out of their way to meet our needs. My only concern is lack of hand washing.
    Respiratory Techs, nurses and doctors will come in and look at baby without washing their hands. Some do wash their hands, some think grabbing gloves makes it all ok, some wear in gloves from lord knows where. Would the staff here think it rude of me to ask them to put a sign on my babies crib asking for all to wash their hands before touching her?
    I do not want to get on the "bad side" of the staff here, as they are so very nice and accommodating, and my little girls care is great in every other aspect.
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   TazziRN
    Your child, your right. If you were the pt you would have the right to ask everyone to wash their hands.

    Another point of view: I do not wash my hands in front of the pt before touching them. They don't see me wash my hands often at the nurse's station so they probably think I don't at all.
  4. by   ShannaRN
    No, I wouldn't perceive this as rude as it should be done with all patients.
  5. by   mrsalby
    I don't think it is rude at all...just a conscientious parent. The Hospital I work at has signs posted everywhere that says "It's OK to ask.".... about washing hands. Our NICU also teaches the two minute surgical scrub and requires it of everyone entering in the NICU. There is also alcohol gel at every bedside as well.

    The staff also types up signs to place on the incubators/cribs that state what the baby likes...EX: My name is XXXXXX and I like to have soft music playing, it helps me relax. I also appreciate if you talk softly to me before you touch me, it makes me so much more comfortable. I really appreciate you washing your hands before you touch me, that way I don't feel any worse if I catch something you gave me. etc...you get the idea. These are done pretty and clear easy to read format. Maybe with stickers and cutsies on them. These "wishes" are designed by the parents and individual for each babe.

    The one thing we are all taught and have drove into our heads with and without scientific evidence is the value of washing hands before and after each patient! So, don't be afraid to offer a friendly reminder to staff as they come in contact with your babe. Believe me, the more you voice your concern the more it will be recognized in an understanding way and passed on.

    I suppose when you are there with your baby, you could always grab the alcohol bottle and offer friendly assistance by pumping the gel into their hands for them! Also, make sure to ask about them cleaning their stethoscope before it touches the babe, if there isn't one assigned for the babe or if they are using their own. Usually the alcohol gel or alcohol swab will do. Ask the nurse to keep them handy so you can offer them. Not many docs carry alcohol wipes with them.

    Good luck!

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