I'm supposed to wear an "Ask me if I washed my hands!" button?! - page 11

Today, administrators launched a handwashing campaign, part of which includes having patient care staff wear giant buttons that say, "Ask me if I washed my hands!" Patients are encouraged to ask... Read More

  1. by   jaynee
    Its a feel good campaign to help the public feel more in control re MRSA











    :roll :roll
  2. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from jaynee
    Its a feel good campaign to help the public feel more in control re MRSA
    Improving the hospital's image by questioning the nurses is not my idea of a 'feel good' campaign.

    It's more like, sabotage.

    But then again, it's not the first time we've been in the cross-hairs. That's fine - as long as we don't pretend this is about increased handwashing: it's about the hospital's image at our expense.

    There has to be better ways to do that than "I'm not trustworthy to do my job unless you verify it, first." That's the same philosophy that brought us trackers -and I balk at that, too.

    Whether there is a better way to improve handwashing or not, THIS IS AN UNACCEPTABLE WAY.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  3. by   NRSKarenRN
    Quote from grannynurse fnp student
    i have followed this thread, with interest, and some dismay. almost everyone as decried the demeaning of wearing a button. almost no one has addressed the real problem-that nosocomial infections are one of the leading causes of prolonged stays in our hospitals. i'm sorry but everytime i am an in-patient i cringe everytime a nurse or physician comes near me. it has been my experience, in three different hospital, in three different states, in three different parts of this country, that staff is frequently remiss in washing their hands, either before or after examining me. if staff put a fraction of the time, that has been spent complaining on this board, into washing their hands, i venture to say the nosocomial infection rate would drop.

    grannynurse
    :yeahthat:



    ok, now that everyone has whined, what are some solid ideas to solve this issue?

    just bought a new antibacterial soap container for office kitchen and refilled dish soap container. why am i the only rn out of 7 to think of these things
    along with makingre kitchen fridge cleaned and table top/work counters disinfected weekly?

    we are all professionals working with 7 clerks. need to see the "whole picture" but unfortunatelly comment is "somone else's job".
    my response: it's all our jobs to do whatever to decrease infection rate.

    have handed wet paper towels to docs in days before hand sanitizer to get them to clean hands pre/post procedure when i'd observed repetative poor hand hygiene.

    lets get the ideas flowing!
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Oct 6, '05
  4. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    If it takes a button to wake the staff up, I would gladly
    wear the button.
    I seriously doubt it'll wake up the staff to do it.

    I wouldn't wear that particular button. No one needs to ask me if i washed my hands because people see me do it. No safety pins needed for that.

    The closest thing to that button i'll ever wear is that blue square one i have that says "Handwashing is the Key to Preventing Infection." And i won't wear that now, because, for one, it's covered up by a gown all day and two, i can't risk having it create a hole in the gown.
  5. by   Jo Dirt
    You people can ride your high horses all you want. I know to wash my hands, and I've got the dryness to prove it. I ain't wearing no demeaning juvenile kick me button.
  6. by   Aquamarine
    I agree totally with you. Handwashing yes...should be done and wearing a button is only insulting and wont change a thing in a positive way. I wash my hands before and after patient care of any kind. I use my ETOH pads to wipe off what I can wipe off between patients. I don't like using the same BP cuff but have to in most cases. Wearing a button is a very stupid idea and would make us hard working intelligent nurses look just that stupid. Docs don't wash but that is not the issue...it is wearing the button. I can think of a lot of buttons...come on. Why don't we wear all our issues on our lab coats for the world to see. How totally ridiculous and so is the person that came up with that button idea. Who would think otherwise. It isn't the buttons...it is the action. You are either going to, or not going to. I do, and all the time.....have an inservice as a reminder...not a button. I would refuse to wear one. I am that against it. I could not go along with it.
    Quote from DusktilDawn
    Because we are not 5 years old and I don't need any "mommys" asking me if I washed my hands or brushed my teeth. I wash my hands before, and after each pt, I clean my stethoscope the same way. BTW I am very proud of my work ethic. What I really find frustrating is when I go wash my hands only to find the soap dispensers empty and no paper towels, and then come back the next night and the same dispensers still have not been filled.

    I've worked on a unit where MRSA and VRE patients were isolated (this was in Canada), on this unit one patient kept being reinfected with MRSA because his visitors kept recontaminated him after they would visit another patient infected with MRSA down the hall. They igored the health teaching from staff about how to prevent the spread of this infection and also ignored the numerous signs posted about handwashing. Another issue is visitors who come in with an infection/illness or bring their kids who have an actively running nose, but I'm sure if the patient gets an infection it's the nurse's fault, since they have time to monitor every person who steps on the unit.

    I've seen doctors and nurses where I work pack wounds with clean gloves instead of sterile ones, where's our infection control nurse on this issue? Staff are not provided sterile dressing trays and doing sterile dressings is not encouraged, again where's the infection control nurse? Doctors will remove the patient's surgical dressing 1st or 2nd day post-op and leave the incision open to air, hello infection control nurse are you out there? I'm not all that surprised when I see patients here develop infections on this unit, and ya know I do see my coworkers washing their hands.

    Housekeeping is supposed to clean the IV poles when a patient is discharged, yet they frequently don't and put them in the soiled utility room, then I have to clean them (yea, one more thing I do) before I utilize it. Equipment is supposed to sent down to Supplies after a patient is discharged, when you order an IV pump it will sometimes take 4 hours and repeated phone calls to get it, many times I've had to disinfect/clean an IV pump because my patient can't wait 4 hours for his heparin gtt to get started. Why we don't keep a supply of clean pumps on the floor (our clean pumps are bagged in plastic, so we know they are clean) is beyond me, but heck why make even one thing easier. Patient beds are longer changed the way they should be, patients are no longer bathed the way they used to be nor with the principles I was taught. I once sat through a lecture at a former facility with the Infection Control Nurse there that felt gloves were being over utilized, her only valid point was that nurses do not need gloves to pass meds.

    Each year the RNs have to complete a competency on Infection control, why not the doctors, CNAs, housekeepers, etc? Frankly it's not only nurses that work in a facility so why is infection control ONLY directed at us. Infection control is everyone's responsibility not just the nurses. We also shouldn't have to babysit everyone else to ensure they comply. Why is not information given to patients and their visitors about preventing the spread of infection, years ago I saw a sign posted at a hospital entrance directed at visitors that included the importance of handwashing and not visiting if they had symptoms of illness (specific symptoms were listed), gee it disappeared, must not have fit in the "customer service" aspect. It is also interesting that I've never even met the Infection Control Nurses at my facility, I guess they don't do midnights.

    Interesting how the media didn't stress the importance of everyone washing their hands, including patient's & visitors. Interesting how it's portrayed ONLY as a nursing issue, therefore it must be the fault of your nurse if you got an infection. Interesting how other factors involved are never discussed, like unsafe patient loads, nurses who usually work their shifts without breaks and never leaving on time, being continually interupted while trying to provide your patient's with care by non-nursing issues, patients arriving 3 at a time without notification or report.

    Frankly the idea of wearing a button is offensive. Wearing one would not improve the work ethic of those who don't have a good one anyway. What about providing written information in a pamphlet upon admission to the patient and their visitors about how to prevent the spread of infection. Maybe their visitor woundn't get their nose out of joint when I go immediately to the sink to wash my hands while they are talking to me, they would understand that it is part of preventing infection. Maybe providing the public information when they enter a facility about infection control and why handwashing is important instead of just telling people to "wash their hands" would be more effective.

    How about administrators being more concerned with providing a work environment that facilitates the nursing staff in providing adequate care in all aspects including infection control. I've noticed as a nurse, when one is overworked, some aspects of infection control unfortunately are not always done. I don't see buttons as a solution, because they don't fix the problems of working conditions or policies. Infection control is not just a nursing issue, it is everyone's issue in a health care facility.

    From a nurse:
    Who knows that the first step to preventing the spread of nosocomial infections is 1. handwashing and 2. clean equipment.
    That handwashing not only protects her patients, but herself as well.
    Is very vocal about infection control issues.
    Who thinks infection control is EVERYBODY'S responsiblity, not just the nurses.
    Makes her own sterile field and uses sterile gloves for wound packings.
    Cleans her own equipment because those responsible don't.
    Who talks to her patients and visitors present about how to prevent infection.
    Gets her own paper towels and soap/santizers and often has to provide the same for her patients also because those responsible don't.
    Who will actually clean the urinals and bedpans after use.
    Takes pride her work ethic and the work ethic of the other RNs she works with.
    Who will not be forced to wear a useless button that fails to address the real issues about infection control and does nothing about them.
  7. by   KellyLynn
    Unfortunately the insulting "Wash the Hands" campaign is spreading.
    Our Hospital has now placed the following statement on all the patient's bedside water pitchers,
    " Ask your Health Care Provider if they washed thier hands".
    At least the phrase does not single out nurses.
  8. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Or this might be effective:



  9. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from KellyLynn
    Unfortunately the insulting "Wash the Hands" campaign is spreading.
    Our Hospital has now placed the following statement on all the patient's bedside water pitchers,
    " Ask your Health Care Provider if they washed thier hands".
    At least the phrase does not single out nurses.
    Wow, it's amazing how we can't find any water pitchers for our patients. . .
    I wonder what keeps happening to them?

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  10. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from KellyLynn
    Unfortunately the insulting "Wash the Hands" campaign is spreading.
    Our Hospital has now placed the following statement on all the patient's bedside water pitchers,
    " Ask your Health Care Provider if they washed thier hands".
    At least the phrase does not single out nurses.
    NO Ma'am, I have no idea why your water pitcher has magic marker scribbled all over it. I'll have to ask management about that . . . .

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  11. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from KellyLynn
    Unfortunately the insulting "Wash the Hands" campaign is spreading.
    Our Hospital has now placed the following statement on all the patient's bedside water pitchers,
    " Ask your Health Care Provider if they washed thier hands".
    At least the phrase does not single out nurses.
    What do we need 3 dozen brillo pads for? Ummmm, it's a patient advocate issue.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  12. by   fergus51
    "If staff put a fraction of the time, that has been spent complaining on this board, into washing their hands, I venture to say the nosocomial infection rate would drop."
    -Grannynurse


    Maybe someone has already brought this up, but I come to this board in my off time. If I want to moan and complain about something, it's my time and has nothing to do with how much I wash my hands at work. I am allowed to spend my free time however I want, thank you very much.
  13. by   Spidey's mom
    Nothing like this is happening at our hospital (yet).

    But I have to say I've seen many examples lately, in public bathrooms, of people not washing their hands - including a Target employee.

    I would not wear a button though. The thing that made an impression of me, although I've always been a good little hand-washer, is that stuff they put on your hands to show up the "dirt" you don't think is there.

    Our water "pitchers" are like those large jugs you get from AM/PM with lids and fat straws. They used to have our hospital logo on it and then that was removed for some reason. They get to take them home.

    steph

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