A new study suggests that child care personnel properly clean their hands less than a quarter of the times they are supposed to,
This study used video cameras to record handwashing habits and compliance among child care workers at an early childhood center in northwest Arkansas. The researchers found that personnel and parents at the facility on average followed proper handwashing procedures only 22 percent of the time before and/or after tasks such as wiping noses, emptying garbage cans, preparing food, changing diapers, or using their cell phones. Caregivers washed 30 percent of the time it was called for, with paraprofessional aides at 11 percent, and parents at 4 percent.
Handwashing can prevent about 30 percent of diarrhea-related sicknesses and about 20 percent of respiratory infection in children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Visit www.apic.org/infectionpreventionchildcare to access APIC’s new infographic and more information about preventing infections in child care facilities.
The study can be found at:
Clark, J., Henk, J. K., Crandall, P. G., Crandall, M. A., O’Bryan, C. A., Bureau, U. S. C., … Pittet, D. (2016). An observational study of handwashing compliance in a child care facility. American Journal of Infection Control, 44(12), 1469–1474. http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2016.08.006