Hand Hygiene Task Force launched at Tallaght Hospital

Monday May 11th: As a follow on to the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) global annual call for health workers to make hand hygiene a priority Tallaght Hospital this morning launched a Hand Hygiene Task Force.

The Tallaght Hospital Hand Hygiene Task Force which is made up of members of the Executive Management Team, Clinical Leads and staff from across the campus will focus on hand hygiene best practice within the hospital on a daily basis for one week. This team, comprising of over 70 members of staff started their patrols of all areas of the hospital advising and reminding patients, staff and visitors of the importance of hand hygiene. 

Commenting on the Task Force launch Tallaght Hospital CEO Mr. David Slevin stated “’Zero Harm – Clean Hands Save Lives’ has given us a very strong template to work from in maintaining the focus on hand hygiene in our hospital. The buy-in to date from staff, patients and visitors to the hospital has been very strong but this is an on-going process. Tallaght Hospital is committed to embedding best practice into its everyday operations and the Hand Hygiene Task Force is the next step in this campaign.”

Tallaght Hospital’s ‘Zero Harm – Clean Hands Save Lives’ follows the WHO’s expert model which recognises that infection prevention is at the heart of strengthening health-care systems. Hand hygiene is core to all interventions and interactions in hospitals and for this reason, Tallaght Hospital has focused on building staff capacity through training as well as informing all visitors to the hospital of their responsibilities in terms of hand hygiene.

Last December, Tallaght Hospital launched a patient safety initiative called ‘Zero-Harm’ with the first initiative in the series focused on the very simple message of ‘Zero Harm – Clean Hands Save Lives’. This involved a concentrated public information campaign involving information leaflets, posters and prominent hand sanitiser dispensers, to highlight the importance of hand hygiene amongst staff, patients and visitors.

‘Zero Harm – Clean Hands Save Lives’ was hugely successful in terms of engagement and buy-in from staff and was supported by an informational hologram which greets all visitors to the hospital and emphasises the importance of hand hygiene in the clinical environment.

About Tallaght Hospital

Tallaght Hospital, incorporating the National Children’s Hospital, is one of Ireland’s largest acute teaching hospitals, providing child-health, adult, psychiatric and age-related healthcare on one site. The hospital has 625 bed and employs almost 3,000 staff. The Hospital is a provider of local, regional and national specialities. It is also a national urology centre, the second largest provider of dialysis services in the country and a regional orthopaedic trauma centre.

Tallaght Hospital is one of two main teaching hospitals of the University of Dublin Trinity College - specialising in the training and professional development of staff in areas such as nursing, emergency medicine and surgery, amongst many others. Tallaght Hospital is part of the Dublin Midlands Hospital Group which serves a population of over 1.2 million across seven counties. A new satellite centre is to be built at Tallaght Hospital as part of the National Children’s Hospital project as a key element of an integrated clinical network for paediatric services nationally.

The hospital’s Emergency Departments catered for 44,640 Adult ED Attendances and 31,934 Paediatric Attendances in 2014. A further 263,929 patients were treated through hospital clinics in 2014. The hospital’s operations are supported by a community of 300 general practitioners in surrounding communities.