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This Policy defines a procedure for effective handwashing (hand hygiene) which the Care Worker is required to practise to minimise the spread of infection when undertaking care duties at the service user’s home:

1. Proper handwashing procedures are essential to reduce the spread of infection between the Care Worker and the service user. Good hand hygiene must be practised on the following occasions:

  • When arriving at a service user’s home and before starting work;

  • Before and after each contact with a service user when undertaking personal care duties;

  • After taking off and discarding disposable protective clothing; e.g. aprons and gloves;

  • After contact with body fluids (vomit, blood, urine, faeces, secretions);

  • Before handling foodstuffs and preparing meals, snacks and drinks;

  • After using toilet facilities;

  • When finishing duties at the service user’s home, just prior to departure.

2. Where deemed necessary the Care Worker will be supplied with small quantities of handwashing materials to take for use at service users’ homes. These materials will include:

  • individual soap bars;

  • biocidal soap sachets;

  • nailbrush for personal use;

  • disposable paper towels.

3. ‘World Health Organisation’ - Hand washing Procedure:

Follow the following 12-step process, which is summarised pictorially on page 2 of this Policy:

Step 1: Wet hands with warm water that is comfortable to the touch, but not too hot.

Step 2: Apply enough soap to cover all surfaces of the hand.

Step 3: Rub hands palm-to-palm, remembering to wash between the fingers of both hands.

Step 4: Rub the right palm over the left dorsum with interlaced fingers, and vice- versa.

Step 5: Rub hands palm-to-palm, with fingers interlaced.

Step 6: Rub backs of fingers to opposing palms, with fingers interlocked.

Step 7: Rotational rubbing of left thumb clasped in right palm, and vice-versa.

Step 8: Rotational rubbing, backwards and forwards, with clasped fingers of right hand in left palm, and vice-versa.

Step 9: Rinse hands thoroughly with water.

Step 10: Dry hands thoroughly with a single-use paper towel or a clean hand towel.

Step 11: Use paper towel to turn off tap OR use elbow-operated tap.

Step 12: Hands are clean.


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