The transmission of healthcare-associated pathogens most often occurs via the contaminated hands of OHCP. It is axiomatic that wearing gloves during patient care is an essential element of standard precautions, yet gloves do not provide complete protection against hand contamination and the hands are also frequently contaminate after the gloves are removed. It is axiomatic that hand hygiene is one of the most important infection control measures for preventing HAIs.
The acquisition of various healthcare-associated pathogens is reduced when hand hygiene is performed more frequently and the prevalence of HAIs is decreased as adherence to recommended hand hygiene practices is improved. Oral healthcare facilities are accountable for establishing a system in which OHCP have the knowledge, competence, time, and tools to practice hand hygiene; and OHCP have the duty to perform hand hygiene - perfectly and every time.
The term hand hygiene is a general term that applies to (1) handwashing (2) hand antisepsis, and (3) surgical hand antisepsis. Products used for hand hygiene in healthcare settings are detergents (surfactants, the term “soaps” is often used). Detergents are compounds that possess cleaning action and are composed of both hydrophilic and lipophilic parts. An antimicrobial soap is a soap that contains an antiseptic agent, a substance that when applied to skin reduces the microbial flora.