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Germ-Busting Progress

  washing hands

Study after study confirms what common sense already dictates: Keeping hands clean prevents the spread of hospital-acquired infections. A year after the hospital launched its aggressive WIPES education and observation campaign, hand hygiene has improved significantly. But the push is on for higher compliance. According to an online monthly report, the March rate stands at 67 percent, based on 1,600 observations. The dashboard, which also reports the compliance rate by division, service and discipline, shows that while some units have departments that keep their rates in the 70 percent range, others are struggling in the 30 percent range. Hanan Aboumatar, hand hygiene communications campaign coordinator, says public recognition helps, as do the online hand hygiene promotion tool kit of information and the one-hour training on hand hygiene observations. Info:

So Long, Wilmer ED
Wilmer Eye Institute’s Emergency Department has merged with Hopkins Hospital’s adult and pediatric emergency departments. The move, says Wilmer Director Peter McDonnell, makes sense because patients who arrive following motor vehicle accidents often have suffered injuries not only to their eyes but to the bones around them and to multiple organs. Wilmer’s current ED doesn’t have the capacity to accommodate such multisystem emergencies. Though the merge won’t affect Wilmer’s status as Maryland’s only designated eye trauma center, it will streamline Wilmer’s daily operations, notes McDonnell, because only about 5 percent of the more than 5,000 patients who entered Wilmer’s ED last year were true emergencies. Patients with severe ocular injuries will be transported to the trauma center, which will move to Wilmer’s new building, on the corner of Broadway and Orleans Street, when it opens this summer.

Crime Prevention Savvy
Though TV dramas like The Wire and Homicide: Life on the Street tend to exaggerate crime in Baltimore City, the threat is real. Indeed, according to the Governor’s Office of Crime Control, Charm City has approximately 45 known criminal street gangs, with more than 1,800 members. Hopkins has been taking steps to raise awareness about potential gang activity and how to avoid becoming a victim. At a recent safety seminar, Corporate Security experts shared tips, such as being aware of your surroundings and paying attention to how you dress (avoid monochromatic outfits in blue or red— gang colors). For a complete list, see



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