Education Matters

Hand Hygiene…Did you know???

Hand Hygiene is the single most important way to prevent healthcare acquired infections and the spread of microorganisms. Mom was right when she always told you to just “Clean Your Hands!”

The Ontario Ministry of Health developed the Just Clean Your Hands (JCYH) program for Ontario healthcare facilities that defines when you should clean your hands. They narrowed it down to the most critical 4 moments of hand hygiene to prevent transmission. If you are about to enter a moment of hand hygiene, stop and clean your hands!

Know and Perform the 4 Moments of Hand Hygiene:

1. Before contact with a patient /patient environment

2. Before conducting a clean procedure (even if gloves will be worn)

3. After potential exposure to bodily fluids (even if gloves were worn)

4. After contact with the patient /patient environment

Figure 1. Just Clean Your Hands – 4 Moments of Hand Hygiene

When on the Unit, Take Note and Locate Alcohol-based Hand Rub Stations.

Having Alcohol-based Hand Rub readily available is just as important as remembering and performing the 4 Moments for Hand Hygiene. Alcohol-based Hand Rub is the preferred method for Hand Hygiene over traditional soap and water at point-of-care.

The next time you’re on a Unit, take a look around and see if you can spot where all the alcohol-based hand rub bottles are located. If there isn’t one near the entrance or at the bedside speak up and bring it to the attention of a staff member or the manager.

Public Health Ontario has loads of great resources available online just visit: and click the links for your needs.

We Want Your Input!

Healthcare provider compliance with hand hygiene has traditionally been challenging because of the changing environment and conditions in which healthcare providers work.

Within healthcare provider groups, the physician group has made great strides, but there is room for more improvement, especially among residents and fellows.

If YOU have an idea on how to raise awareness for Hand Hygiene in your area WE want to hear about it! We want to make it safer for patients one hand at a time.

Contact Ben de Mendonca in the Quality and Patient Safety Department by e-mail at if you have specific ideas or want to learn more.

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