Objective: To improve hand hygiene adherence using a multi-faceted hand hygiene program coupled with a self-insurance trust premium rebate program.
Methods: In July 2009, VUMC leaders established institutional quality goals for hand hygiene adherence (70% threshold, 80% target, and 90% reach) based on direct observations. In October 2009, VUMC launched the enhanced Hand Hygiene Campaign which consisted of faculty and staff education, marketing, expanded direct observation of hand hygiene practice, and both electronic and in person feedback to chairmen, clinic and hospital leaders. Unit managers conducted observations in locations for which they had no direct supervisory role. Hand hygiene adherence data were recorded via a web-based data-entry system and were stratified according to patient care unit and job description. Data were aggregated and reported monthly to the VUMC Quality Council for evaluation against target adherence goals and consideration of feedback interventions to improve hand hygiene adherence.
Results: Baseline hand hygiene adherence varied prior to the campaign, with rates ranging from 31% to 80% (Figure 1). Following enhancement of the program, hand hygiene adherence was sustained above 77% from February through September 2010. Improved adherence rates allowed the medical group and facility leadership to claim 75% of the rebate dollars allocated for the hand hygiene metric.
Conclusions: Hand hygiene is an important risk reduction and patient safety strategy. Use of a self-insurance trust rebate within a multi-faceted hand hygiene campaign and direct feedback to leaders was associated with sustained improvement in hand hygiene adherence.