Community Development Health

Healthcare acquired infections claim 50 000 lives daily worldwide

Hand hygiene

Nearly 500, 000 patients get health care associated infections each day throughout the world of which 20-50 000 die as a result of these health care acquired infections, Principal Director, Curative Services, Mr Sydney Makarawo has said.

In his speech at the belated World Hand Hygiene Commemorations running under the theme ‘Clean care for all, it’s in your hands,’ held at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals, Mr Makarawo said all health workers need to be champions and advocates for hand hygiene demanding resources such as hand sanitizers for hand hygiene during patient care. He also urged Infection Prevention Control focal persons to monitor infection prevention and control standards including hand hygiene practices and take the necessary action to improve practices and build a culture of safety within the facility.

“I urge all the health care personnel to champion and advocate for this hand hygiene and be demand resources for hygiene during patient care,” he said.

He also said Zimbabwe being a nation that is producing alcohol from sugarcane at such a large scale to support the fuel industry, some of this alcohol should be channeled towards producing alcohol hand rub/sanitizer for health institutions and Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals pharmacy is capacitated to produce these alcohol hand rubs and is willing to share their expertise with other institutions.

“The nation is producing sugarcane at a large scale to support the fuel industry, some of this alcohol can be channeled directed towards producing alcohol hand rubs.

“I encourage the building of private public partnerships with such industries that produce alcohol so that alcohol based hand rub can be universally accessible by all healthcare workers, patients and visitors within health facilities thus improving patient outcomes which ensures that health workers are protected and the general community at large.

Acting Chief Executive Officer at Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals Mr Edson Mundenda they are engaged in elevating hygiene at the hospital saying they have completed the construction of a 2.5 mega litre tank to ensure constant supply of running water throughout the institution and has a 72 hour water back up cover incase municipal water is cut off for 3 days.

He commended the hospital pharmacy for being one of the few in the country to manufacture its own alcohol hand rub according to WHO standards.

The commemorations also saw donations to the hospital from B.Braun Zimbabwe which gave hand sanitisers, Nemchem pharmaceuticals which gave signage on how to use hand rubs and Safel Insurance Company which donated a microwave, electric jug and 2 huge plastic buckets.

World Hand Hygiene Day takes place on 5 May every year and the day was declared by the World Health Organization and encourages patients and their family to join health workers in their in their efforts to practice good hand hygiene.

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende