Why you should be able to see doctors’ and nurses’ elbows

Staff at the hospital

Staff at the hospital

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Staff at the hospital should wear nothing below their elbows.

The Bare Below the Elbows ‘It’s not just for Christmas’ Campaign has been launched at Noble’s Hospital.

Ralph Peake MHK, who’s a member of the department, officially launched the campaign while visiting Ward 6.

Mr Peake said hand hygiene was the most important measure in the prevention of healthcare-associated infection.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that long sleeves, stoned rings and wrist watches must be avoided as they can be contaminated with pathogens and can impede appropriate hand hygiene.

Margaret Knight, lead nurse, infection prevention and control said: ‘The Bare Below the Elbows principle facilitates good hand hygiene practice and ensures staff are ready to wash their hands properly.’

The new policy means that staff are expected to be bare from their elbows to their fingertips. It applies to all staff in the DHSC who visit the hospital whether on a ward or in an outpatients department.

Senior nurses and ‘patient experience representatives’ have been working in partnership to educate and support front line staff in the smooth implementation of Bare Below the Elbows.

Medical director Dr Jugnu Mahajan said: ‘It is encouraging to know that the ’Bare Below the Elbows’ principles are already embedded in practice by certain groups of healthcare staff’.

Norman Kneen, on behalf of the patient experience and quality committee, said: ‘It is another initiative that should give assurance to patients that the hospital will take every possible step to prevent the risk of healthcare-associated infection.’

Mr Kneen also said that the committee had been very impressed with the enthusiasm and diligence of the Department of Health and Social Care Infection Prevention and Control Team over the past few years.

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