arrow_up-blue blog branches consultations events facebook-icon facebook-icon2 factsheet forum-icon forum hands key link location lock mail measure menu_plus news pdf pdf2 phone policies publications related search share subjectguide twitter-icon word youtube-icon

New RCN guide to effective hand washing

11 Dec 2015

Effective hand washing is one of the most important measures for infection prevention, so the RCN has launched a new laminated guide for the independent sector.

In 2015 the RCN launched a competition to find a ‘hands on’ participant to take part in a modelling shoot for our new Hand Washing Guide.

University academic Valerie Ness, a Lecturer in Nursing and Community Health at Glasgow Caledonian University, took the top prize by tweeting her hands placed together in the RCN emblem. Valerie was whisked down to RCN HQ in London to take part in a photoshoot for the new 10-step guide.

Valerie, who has been an RCN member since she was a student, is part of Glasgow Caledonian University’s infection prevention research team, and is a passionate advocate of raising awareness of good hand hygiene. She was recently part of a team which achieved the Guinness World Record for 'the largest hand hygiene lesson (multiple locations)', with her students teaching simultaneous hand hygiene lessons in primary schools across Glasgow.

Valerie says: "I thought the competition was a great opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of hand sanitising. I had a great time at the photoshoot. It was quite involved – it took three hours to get the photos, with RCN Marketing staff pouring running water over my hands at various speeds, and the photographer getting the right light and height for the shots. My hands were a little prune-like at the end, so I was very pleased to be given a hand cure kit at the end as a gift from the RCN!

"I think the photos in the RCN's guide are really clear, the messaging is strong and simple, and as it's laminated you can easily put it up next to your sinks for quick reference. A good hand washing method is one of the most important measures you’ll learn for infection prevention. So much is down to technique, and if you can get into the habit of this, you’ll be exercising one of the best ways to prevent infection."

If you work for the independent sector you can get a free copy of the Hand Washing Guide for your workplace - call 0345 772 6100, select option four, and quote Publication Code 004977.