The role of visitors in Infection Control at the RD&E
Joint Director of Infection Prevention & Control Judy Potter said: “people wash their hands far less than they should or say they do. Scientists believe that 80 per cent of germs could be spread by our hands coming into contact with many surfaces and other people. We hope this film reflects the importance we place on everyone having effective hand hygiene to keep healthy.”
The RD&E expects visitors to follow some simple infection control advice to aid patient recovery:
- Stay at home if you have a cold, respiratory infection or stomach upset and only visit if you have had no symptoms for at least 48 hours
- Keep children, especially babies, home because they are vulnerable to germs and infections brought into hospital
- Use the chairs on wards, not beds
- There is no need to wash your hands before entering a ward or the hospital. The important time to clean your hands is immediately before you have contact with you friend or relative – feel free to use gel at the end of their bed.
- Wherever possible, keep to visiting times so Domestic Services can clean wards and around bed spaces easily before visitors arrive
- Please follow any additional instructions given by ward staff which may be necessary.
Staying in touch with family and friends is an important part of a patient’s treatment, recovery and overall wellbeing.
Members of the public are playing their part by responding positively to visiting times. The nurse or midwife in charge can advise you if there are visiting arrangements specific to a specialist area.
As part of the Cleaner Hospitals campaign, one of the reasons for introducing restricted visiting in most wards was to allow the domestic staff easier access to bed spaces for cleaning.