Midway Honors, Honors in Nursing
Date of Award
Frances W. Sills, Joy Wachs
Thesis Professor Department
Judy McCook, Aimee Rowe, Foster Levy
Hospital-acquired infections cost hospitals approximately $30.5 billion per year and also result in longer hospital stays, chronic conditions, and even death with associated malpractice costs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hand hygiene is a simple, effective way to prevent illness and infection. The purpose of this research was to determine if visitors to a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) in a regional medical center comply with hand-washing policies and procedures. If NICU visitors wash their hands properly, they can prevent potentially fatal infections from spreading to patients, healthcare workers, and unaffected family members. Hand-washing compliance has been previously studied in NICU staff and other healthcare workers, but not solely visitors. The researcher observed more than 120 visitors as they entered the NICU to determine the number who washed their hands for the required three minutes. Based on the findings, NICU staff and administration will be encouraged to provide more effective education, post informative signs, and install equipment to encourage visitors to use proper hand-washing techniques. Effective hand-washing should result in lower infection rates among NICU patients and lower health care costs.
Honors Thesis - Open Access
Raynor, Desiree, "Visitor Hand-washing Compliance According to Policies and Procedures at a Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit." (2011). Undergraduate Honors Theses. Paper 124. https://dc.etsu.edu/honors/124
Copyright by the authors.