Intensive Neonatal Treatment Requirements
Perhaps it represents a psychological backlash that as adults they steadfastly refuse to do as they were told, as children.
Bad enough when you witness a co-worker exiting the shared bathroom facilities in an office tower without so much as a sprinkle on their hands, despite their having spent more than ample time in front of the mirror to ensure that they look presentable, after exiting the cubicle.
And we're such a polite society; although the sight of that stupidity makes us cringe, we seldom say anything to admonish such uncivilized, unhygienic behaviour, though we make mental notes.
But when it comes to health professionals ignoring the very basics of viral and bacterial communication through neglecting to wash their hands, going heedlessly from patient to patient, despite their education, despite their knowledge, despite intelligence and despite that it is widely recognized as a failing among health professionals, it's enough to make one tear out one's hair in despair.
Wait: there's a solution. Some bright light in Italy thought up a working solution. And that is? Why, to pay dividends. In the way of a bonus, a hefty one, amounting annually to 3,000 euros ($3,900) to those in the nursing profession who agree to conscientiously wash their hands between patients. This, it should be noted, is in a hospital ward that houses the most health-vulnerable of patients, the premature-baby-unit.
The 70 nurses who work at the Mangiagalli clinic are monitored on closed-circuit televisions, ensuring that they wash their hands, using the correct technique, spending the required time that it takes scrubbing, between patients. As a result, these reward-conscious (notably not profession-conscious) nurses have 'earned' their annual awards. As evidenced by the 30% drop in hospital-spread disease.
By controlling the level of bacteria on their hands before approaching a baby or a newborn requiring very special nursing attention, they successfully lowered the number of babies who died or who became seriously ill as a result of their previous neglect. These were babies who were already seriously ill, or whose health status was compromised by prematurity, or who were immunodepressed.
Would it not occur to a health professional that it would be incumbent upon them to practise high standards of hygiene, commensurate with the demands of their healing profession? "Intensive neonatal treatment is one of the areas with the highest risk of infection", the head of neonatology at the clinic reported in an interview with the daily Corriere della Sera, explaining the drop in the spread of disease.
Impressive accounting of irresponsibility solved by paying supposedly responsible professionals to be professional.