Volunteers Needed for Hand Hygiene Program at Inverness Consolidated Memorial Hospital

With flu season just around the corner, volunteers are needed for a unique program that promotes the everyday importance of hand hygiene.

“Infections are often spread by our hands. That’s why good hand hygiene is the single most effective way to help prevent the spread of infections such as colds, influenza and stomach bugs,” says Gayle MacDonald, Infection Prevention and Control (IPAC) nurse at Inverness Consolidated Memorial Hospital (ICMH).

That is why the Hand-Hygiene Ambassador program is being rolled out at ICMH. The program was developed by Volunteer Services and the IPAC team with Nova Scotia Health Authority. It has been in place at the Cape Breton Regional Hospital since 2014.

Through the program trained volunteers help educate patients, visitors and staff on the importance of good hand hygiene and also demonstrate proper hand hygiene techniques. Volunteers go to waiting areas throughout the hospital and offer to demonstrate proper hand hygiene techniques to patients, visitors and others. Once the demonstration is over, volunteers give a free hand gel sample to people who took part. The demonstration takes less than two minutes.

Volunteers must be over 18 years of age. Education and training will be provided by the IPAC team.

“We are seeking people who have good communication skills, are friendly and approachable to help spread the word about the importance of hand hygiene.” says MacDonald.

Anyone interested in becoming a hand hygiene volunteer can contact Gayle MacDonald, IPAC nurse at 902-574-3297 or gayle.macdonald@nshealth.ca.

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Media Contact: Greg Boone, Communications & Public Relations
Phone: 902-567-7791 Cell: 902-565-6872 Greg.Boone@nshealth.ca