Squeaky clean hands!
Visit to Outwood Grange Academy to launch a schools poster campaign
5th November 2013

Derek Butler and Andrea Jenkyns will be working with schools in Yorkshire promoting hand washing with children and getting children to design posters to display in local hospitals. They are hopeful of promoting this idea to the Department of Health to get them to roll out a national campaign. They used the materials from the highly successful 'Give Soap a Chance Campaign' designed by our colleague Eileen Henderson from Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust.

We know Eileen's materials are a great hit with the youngsters from the work with children from the Cherwell Centre in Blackpool, and combining the efforts of children and hospital champions to embed a culture of good hand hygiene is a simple approach which should reap benefits for generations to come - our children are our future carers, teachers and healthcare workers.

Derek and Andrea will be teaching the children about washing their hands to prevent the spread of MRSA and other germs and launched the competition in partnership with Mid Yorkshire NHS Hospitals Trust and Outwood Grange Academy, encouraging the children to create a poster highlighting the importance of washing their hands. The winning poster will be displayed around Pinderfields Hospital. The Hand Hygiene Campaign will also roll out to other hospitals.

From the feedback received it was clear the children enjoyed the visit, here are a few quotes:

"Squeaky clean hands! Mr Derek Butler, who is a hygiene specialist, came into school to talk about cleaning your hands. He showed us how to wash our hands properly - the key is to wash them for at least 45 seconds by singing the "Happy Birthday" song twice! You need to remember to wash between your fingers, the back and front of your hands and most importantly, your thumb!" Kiera D and Caitlan S

"I learnt how important it is to wash your hands, and what objects may hold bacteria and germs" Maisie E

Christine Cruise, Head of Infection Prevention and Control at Mid Yorkshire NHS Hospitals Trust is happy to help promote hand hygiene in schools in the Wakefield District and will be coordinating the judging of the posters on 20 November, followed by a presentation to the winner at Pinderfields Hospital.

There are resources available to promote hand washing for parents and children on the charity's website, which also provides links to Hull & East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust's materials at http://mrsaactionuk.net/kidshandwashing.html

If you or someone you care about has been affected by a healthcare infection and you wish to discuss this with us, please contact us at info@mrsaactionuk.net