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Infection Control

Two out of three med students don't know when to wash

December 06, 2011
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WASHINGTON — Only 21 percent of surveyed medical students could identify five true and two false indications of when and when not to wash their hands in the clinical setting, according to a press release.

Three researchers from the Institute for Medical Microbiology and Hospital Epidemiology at Hannover Medical School in Hannover, Germany, collected surveys from 85 medical students in their third year of study during a lecture class that all students must pass before bedside training and contact with patients commences, the release stated.

According to the release, students were given seven scenarios, of which five — "Before contact to a patient," "Before preparation of intravenous fluids," "After removal of gloves," "After contact to the patient’s bed" and "After contact to vomit" — were correct hand hygiene indications.

Only 33 percent of the students correctly identified all five true indications, and only 21 percent correctly identified all true and false indications, the release noted.

"There is no doubt that we need to improve the overall attitude toward the use of alcohol-based hand rub in hospitals," concluded the authors.

"To achieve this goal, the adequate behavior of so-called ''role models'' is of particular importance," the authors added.

Click here to read the complete release.

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