- Patients and Visitors
- Guidelines for Visitors and Families
- Safety Tips for Patients and Visitors
- Lifespan Interpreter Services
- MyLifespan Health Record Sign Up
- Lifespan Telehealth
Insurance, Billing and Financial Assistance
- What to Expect When You Arrive at the Hospital
- Know About Your Insurance Policy
- Frequently Asked Questions about Your Bill
- Cost of Care and Price Transparency at Lifespan Hospitals
- Your Rights and Protections Against Surprise Medical Bills
- Financial Assistance
- Pay a Bill Online
- Contact Lifespan Customer Service
- Request Medical Records
Ethics and Patient Rights
- About the Ethics Committee
- About Advance Directives
- Speak for Yourself
- End of Life Care
- Patient Rights and Responsibilities
- Related Links
- Spiritual Care Department
Hand Hygiene for Patients and Visitors
Hand hygiene is of the utmost importance at a hospital. Hospitals have high concentrations of very ill people, those with compromised immune systems, the very young and the very old. Patients are highly susceptible to bacteria and other pathogens.
Washing your hands is one of the most basic defenses against the spread of germs and bacteria. Hands commonly come in contact with the face, where germs easily enter through the mouth, nose and eyes. During flu season, it is especially important to follow basic hygiene rules to prevent the spread of flu viruses.
Hand Hygiene for Patients
Hospital patients are susceptible to germs and are expected to follow general hygiene guidelines.
- Always wash your hands after using the bathroom.
- Wash your hands or use antibacterial foam after you come in contact with hospital staff.
- Always wash your hands before eating.
- Never touch dressings, wounds, or IV lines.
- Ask visitors to stay home if they are sick.
- If you are in doubt, ask your health care workers if they have cleaned their hands.
Visitors are also under an obligation to maintain hygiene habits when in the hospital. Patients are already in a compromised state and outside contaminates can be especially damaging. Consider the health of those you are visiting and those around you as you enter the hospital.
- Always wash your hands both before seeing a patient and after you leave.
- In the absence of soap and water, use antibacterial foam, available from dispensers in each hospital room and in hallways.
- Never touch wounds, bandages, IV lines, catheters or tools used to treat the patient.
- Stay home if you are sick.