Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.
Tags: hospital | infection | alcohol | germs | surfaces

Preventing Hospital Infections

Tuesday, 27 March 2012 08:24 AM

Question: My wife was recently admitted to the hospital. Before they took her to the room, I wiped down the bed rails and other surfaces in her room with alcohol wipes. The nurses looked at me like I was crazy. Do you think I went overboard?

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
The hospital environment plays a major role in the nosocomial transmission of microorganisms. Potential sources of hospital cross infections are doctors’ white coats, nurses’ uniforms, hospital garments, privacy drapes, stethoscopes, bed rails, and common hospital surfaces. One critical aspect of bacterial transfer is the ability of microorganisms to survive for a considerable length of time on these surfaces. Many hospital personnel also are susceptible to such infections. Although most hospitals do routine checks in possible high-risk contamination areas, it is better to take precautions as well.

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There are many possible sources for infection during hospital stays, but there are ways you can reduce your risk of getting a hospital-borne illness.
Tuesday, 27 March 2012 08:24 AM
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