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Hospitals: Hygiene

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 9 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what recent assessment he has made of the effects of poor hand hygiene on (a) infection and (b) mortality rates in hospitals; (304101)

(2) what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of each hand hygiene initiative undertaken in hospitals;

(3) how much his Department spent to increase levels of compliance with hand hygiene procedures in hospitals in the last 12 months.

Hand hygiene is only one part of our comprehensive strategy to reduce health care associated infections, and the evidence base shows that it prevents infections. All acute trusts signed up to the National Patient Safety Agency's ‘cleanyourhands’ campaign and independent evaluation of this campaign suggests a strong association with a reduction in infections. We do not specifically fund or assess individual hospital campaigns and mortality rates have not been specifically investigated.