Ipswich Hospital Trial


Ipswich Hospital is trialling HigenX, new state-of-the-art  technology, in a bid to further improve hand-washing  compliance among staff.


The hospital agreed to be the first in the country to trial the  unique system to back up its long-running ‘How Clean Are Your Hands?’ campaign.


HigenX records hand hygiene compliance among staff on a  real-time basis, automatically and without the need to observe and input data. It allows the hospital to showcase high standards  of hand cleaning activity and identify areas for improvement.


Each member of staff wears a small monitor, attached by a  clip, which registers each time the staff member washes their  hands. It records each wash by communicating with devices placed above all hand basins and alcohol gel stations. 


The monitors also have lights which light up green when staff  are regularly washing their hands and red acts as a reminder.  The technology uses a combination of passive and active radio frequency identification. 


Director of Infection Prevention and Control Gwen Collins said:  “The system is designed to be unobtrusive, easy to operate and  reliable – claims that our experience have proven.” 


The technology was first trialled in gynaecology and gynaeoncology surgery and then rolled out into the hospital’s new  Emergency Department (ED) in the Garrett Anderson Centre.  Tests in the ED will prove whether the system stands up to a busy and unpredictable clinical environment and if the data is reliable, useful and reflective of practice 


Sue Beeston, housekeeper in the ED, said:


"It’s really working.  There’s no chance people can forget now."


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