Annual Deaths from Hospital Acquired Infections Exceed Breast Cancer, HIV and Car Accidents Combined
ANNAPOLIS, Md., May 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The statistics are alarming! One in twenty patients will be infected with a Healthcare-Associated Infection (HAI) with over one-hundred-thousand deaths this year from infections such as Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Clostridium difficile, inadequate aseptic techniques during intravenous or urinary catheter insertion or surgical procedures, and ventilator-associated pneumonia at an annual hospital cost in excess of 30 billion dollars. The CDC is quoted as saying "over one half of all hospital infections are preventable." The most unfortunate aspect of these deaths is that many HAIs can be avoided with the simple application of good hygiene practices by healthcare personnel.
Current studies show that healthcare workers fail to comply with proper hand hygiene practices more than 60% of the time. The sad reality is that the association of poor hand hygiene and HAIs has been well known for over 150 years, yet little has been done to effectively change this harmful behavior by healthcare workers. With every pun intended: A solution is now in hand!
The convenient means one uses to input and access information on the iPhone or iPad (capacitive touch technology) has now been incorporated into a system for monitoring hand hygiene compliance. Re-purposing this familiar iPad touch technology has resulted in a one-of-its-kind U.S. patent No. 7,893,842 being issued to Dr. Richard Deutsch of Annapolis, MD, for a hand hygiene monitoring and surveillance system that assures virtual 100% caregiver compliance with federally recommended HAI prevention and hand hygiene protocol.
Use of this technology should significantly reduce the scourge of HAIs via its application as a novel means of electronic surveillance, which is capable of determining the exact moment of actual physical contact between the healthcare worker (not unlike the iPhone user's finger) and the patient or patient's related medical devices such as their bed, intravenous catheter, urinary catheter, or ventilator (not unlike the iPhone screen itself), and then determining the healthcare worker's hygiene status by correlating the detected patient contact with the healthcare worker's previous activation of a system associated fixed or portable hand sanitizer. Detection of contact generates several animated color coded graphics reflecting the healthcare worker's hand hygiene status on an iPad like display screen.
Failure to comply with required hand sanitizing creates a forensic visual recording of the hand hygiene violation with the subsequent identification and possible re-education of the non-compliant healthcare worker. In addition, this first-of-its-kind ability to determine actual patient contact provides an effective means of reducing staff workload by eliminating many unnecessary hand-cleaning procedures when patient contact is not required, e.g. when viewing a patient monitor! The world-renowned expert in HAIs Dr. William Jarvis is quoted as saying "Hand hygiene is a critical and essential element in HAI prevention. Any technology that can detect and promote hand hygiene during the most important healthcare worker activities, i.e., patient and patient medical device contact, should become the standard for promoting hand hygiene."
Facilities for which this hand hygiene detection and compliance innovation should be considered include hospitals, outpatient medical facilities (including emergency departments, hemodialysis, pain, endoscopy clinic, etc.) and long-term care facilities. Strategic partner inquiries welcomed. Pictures, descriptions and additional details for the Safe-Hands hygiene monitoring system can be found at http://www.SafeHandsNow.com
Dr. Richard Deutsch
Phone: (410) 849-2724
E-Mail: [email protected]