In a hospital, a simple act of washing your hands can mean the difference between life and death.
Healthcare Associated Infections are a major problem for hospitals worldwide.
In a comprehensive report issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) in 2011, millions of patients worldwide are affected by healthcare-associated infections each year, resulting in significant mortality and financial losses for health systems.
With this knowledge in mind, Doctors Hospital has made hand hygiene protocols a major hospital-wide priority.
In-house observational studies conducted on a routine basis identified Doctors Hospital Clinical Director Dr. Michael N’tari Darville as one of Doctors Hospital’s leaders when it comes to observing hand hygiene and patient safety and he was one of just six physicians worldwide to be awarded the Lathem Physician Leadership in Hand Hygiene Award.
“Dr. Darville was the obvious choice for a nomination for this award because he truly practices what we preach here at Doctors Hospital when it comes to hand hygiene and patient safety,” said Tamara Duncombe, Doctors Hospital Infection Control and Safety coordinator.
A Lathem Award winner provides high-quality, compassionate care to patients via exemplary hand hygiene practices.
Such physicians serve as change agents within their facilities and provide a visible example of excellence to patients, visitors, and staff members.
Research suggests that physician-led quality initiatives significantly reduce adverse outcomes and help sustain compliance among caregivers. The award is based on physician activities related to patient care, quality, and leadership in hand hygiene.
“I humbly accept this award. It’s something that I preach and push because I do realise the importance of how such a simple task can be a lifesaving process and definitely a cost saving process as well,” said Dr. Darville, adding, “so while it might seem funny to some, I think it’s important to shed some light on this simple procedure of proper hand washing.”
Doctors Hospital says it takes hand hygiene seriously.
Physicians and associates are constantly reminded about the importance of the simple act, and education extends to visitors and patients as well.
Hand hygiene stations are positioned throughout Doctors Hospital, including outside every patient room to encourage all who come into contact with a patient that they should clean their hands before they examine or even visit.
Patients are encouraged to be their own best advocate by asking healthcare providers to clean their hands every time they enter the room.
As the only Joint Commission International Accredited acute care hospital in the Caribbean, Doctors Hospital continues to set the standard for quality healthcare and patient safety in The Bahamas and throughout the region.