Skin Irritation and Dryness Caused by Alcohol-based Handrubs


Is it really such a big problem? In our last post, we mentioned that foams and gels were developed because rinses often caused skin irritation and dryness. Skin-related problems used to be one of the first things healthcare workers (HCW) think about when talking about alcohol-based handrubs (ABHR). But what is the situation today? Many HCW report that ABHR causes skin irritation. The drying effect of ABHR is a major cause of poor acceptance [1]. Li et al. 2015 reported that one of the top three complaints against using ABHR in rural China is skin irritation [2]. Alcohols can really… Read more

Rinse, gel, foam – What is the difference?


If we are about to find a proper alcohol-based hand hygiene product, we can select from a broad spectrum; liquid format hand sanitizers (rinses), gels and foams are available across a wide spectrum. But which one is the best, and what factors should we consider when choosing? Rinses were the first alcohol-based hand disinfectant products. They were not skin-friendly, caused skin irritation and dryness for many healthcare workers (HCW). That is why gels and foams were developed. In 2002, Kramer et al. compared several hand gels and rinses. They concluded that rinses have significantly greater bacterial reduction factor than gels…. Read more

Costs related to Electronic Compliance Monitoring Systems


Previously we summarized what types of Electronic Compliance Monitoring System exist, and described how ECM systems are used in the real clinical settings. Now, we are further investigating what costs are associated with these systems. Installation cost Installation of a location-based monitoring system is a big investment. Armellino et al. 2012 described the installation of a video-monitoring system in a 17-bed medical ICU, costing $50,000, and it is not including the salary of the observer who manually analyses the recorded video [1, 2]. Morgan et al. 2012 installed an electronic dispenser counter system. They estimated the installation and maintenance cost… Read more

Electronic Compliance Monitoring Systems in the real hospital environment


In our previous posts, we summarized what types of Electronic Compliance Monitoring (ECM) Systems exist, and showed their strengths and weaknesses. Now we show some actual clinical settings where ECM systems were applied. ECM and data volumes The main advantage of ECM systems is that they can monitor hand hygiene compliance 24/7, and can gather plenty of data. Marra et al. 2010 compared direct observation with compliance measured by electronic dispenser counter. They found that direct observation can only monitor 1.3% of the hand hygiene events [1]. In McCalla et al. 2017 survey human observers collected 480 hand hygiene events,… Read more

Electronic Compliance Monitoring Systems


In our previous posts, we demonstrated that direct observation of hand hygiene is labor-intensive, time-consuming and expensive. Electronic monitoring systems (ECM) can eliminate the shortcomings of the direct observation. Now, we summarize the different concepts of ECM. Video-monitored, direct observation These systems, like Arrowsight, provide remote video auditing service. In this case, the observer is not present in the ward, but sitting in a monitoring center. The observation this way becomes more convenient and requires less human resource. These systems are not automated, rather technology-supported, as data is always processed by a human observer. Main question related to these systems… Read more

Second Semmelweis CEE Conference


The second Semmelweis CEE Conference on Hospital Hygiene and Patient Safety was held last week in Budapest. HandInScan was one of the main sponsors of the conference, we are really proud that we can support such a high profile professional event. Main topic of the conference was Communication; why communication is important in infection control, and what we should know about it? Let us pick some interesting ideas presented at the event. Didier Pittet: “Adapt to adopt” “If you want people to adapt a new strategy, you need to let them adopt it. Adopt it to their resources, their believes,… Read more

Ignaz Semmelweis


The Semmelweis Scanner was named in honor of the Hungarian physician, Ignaz Semmelweis. Now, giving you a brief summary who was he, and why are we so proud of his legacy. Ignaz Semmelweis was born in 1818, Budapest, Hungary (then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire) [1]. After finishing his schooling at the University of Pest, he travelled to Vienna to start a law school. Soon after his arrival, he became so attracted to medicine that he decided to change to medical school. Vienna Medical School was already one of the world leading centers at that time. He received Master’s degree… Read more

Evolution of hand hygiene assessment tools


From UV-lamps through black boxes to the Semmelweis Scanner In our previous posts, we described what the fluorescent trial is, and when it should be applied. The conclusion was that the fluorescent trial is a quick and cost-effective solution, it is microbiologically validated, and these facts make it a great educational tool. Once we decided that it is a method for us to apply, what are the commercially available solutions? How do these systems differ in availability, capabilities and price? The minimal requirements for the fluorescent trial are a UV-lamp and fluorescent dye containing ABHR (alcohol-based handrub). We previously summarized… Read more