Staff across the Leeds Hospital Trust, which runs both St James’s and the LGI, will be taking time out to talk to patients and visitors about the need for good hand hygiene.

Student nurses and apprentice clinical support workers will be teaching people the correct way to wash their hands and sharing information at the bedsides of patients in order to reduce hospital-acquired infections.

During the campaign, the Trust will also be moving to new foam-based soap and alcohol-foam sanitizer, which many people prefer to the current gel-based products. People will be asked “don’t make your hands everyone else’s business”.

The campaign will culminate in a series of short animations aimed at patients, visitors and staff to increase awareness of how poor hand hygiene can impact upon everyone.

Matron Sarah Miller, who is leading the campaign, said “This is a great opportunity to really engage with the people of Leeds on a really important subject. We are asking people to focus on washing their hands with soap and water to prevent the spread of infections.”

“It’s vital that people understand that the importance of good hand hygiene, as unclean hands have the potential to spread MRSA and C Difficile to vulnerable patients causing complications in their care. In some cases, all it takes to prevent loved ones becoming ill is to wash your hands.”

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