Nurses Wash your hands
Washing your hands sounds pretty simple doesn't it. Do you know how many times a nurse washes her hands in one shift? Nursing has made me a germaphobe, …well almost. In nursing school your taught to wash your hands after any and every contact with a patients. In mental health, where patients are known, for not being at their very best,of personal hygiene – Nurses should be even more conscience of hand washing.
Nursing in mental health patients gives you another view of germs. We have to check on our patients ever 15 minutes – we have to know where they are and what they are doing. As the staff are touching door knobs and chairs that are on the hallway. Those are just a few places that they will wipe "things" on.
Also Searching patients clothes, the bed linen and things in their rooms can be a little gummy at times. *wink*
I can give you 10 even 20 reasons why you should wash your hands but do I really need too when your dealing with people?
Cleaning Your Stethoscope
This goes hand-in-hand with the hand washing, yes that was an intentional pun. Think about all the times you use your stethoscope and did not clean it in between each patient use. Have you ever let someone else borrow your stethoscope? Where do you think their hands were? Did they clean the stethoscope? Did they wash their hands? I observed a nurse last night reach in the drawer in the nurses station and pull out a stethoscope that is used for the general community of staff. She did not clean the ear pieces or the bell of the stethoscope before she used it. Not only did she stick all that yuck in her ears, she applied that scope on the patient's skin with someone else's germs. Who knows what was on the skin of the person that it was used on last. Sound a little phobic? Ever heard of the common cold? The next time you go to the Doctor and they take your blood pressure and he listens to your chest. Stop for just a second and wonder where else that has touched. I bet that made you smile.
How about your ink pen
You use your pen then lay it down on the desk, and on top of the chart your working on. Wonder how many people have touched that a day.How about laying it on the medication cart? You may have dropped it on the floor. I have even observed nurses putting their ink pens in their mouth. There are a million-and-one things out there that we can not control. The one thing that we can control and only takes 30 seconds – washing our hands.
Have you ever noticed when someone comes to work with the sniffles. They use Kleenex and cough into the bend of their arm. They are washing their hands … most of the time. The next morning, or a couple days later you start to get the sniffles, and your body aches. You have no idea where you got this cold? Just imagine all the surfaces you touched, and all the hand washing you did not do Nuff said.
Some nurses think that they have built their immune system to battle off all the germs they work with. Since you are exposed to the ‘nasty’ bugs at work, there is NO WAY you’ll get the common head cold, or upper respiratory infection, or the seasonal flu! Think again … and wash your hands.
My co-workers know when I come on shift that I will be cleaning the work area. However that does not last the entire shift – nor kill all that is sitting on the surfaces. I try to think if I was the patient and how I hope to be taken care of, or if that was my family member. People come to the hospital with some type of issue already – they do not want your germs too, nor do you want theirs.
Have you washed your hands this hour?
She also runs her own company on the side and supports other nurses in how to bring passion into their role at work. Out of the box remedies for speaking to people and more.
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