The HyGreen system records all hand-washing events.
Many busy health care workers could use a nudge or friendly reminder to wash their hands before patient interaction. And that's exactly what they're getting in the Neurosurgical Intensive Care Unit at Shands at the University of Florida (UF).

The unit at Shands at UF has deployed a system that actively reminds caregivers to wash their hands and records all hand-washing events and patient-staff interactions.

Lennox Archibald, M.D., hospital epidemiologist for Shands at UF and an adjunct professor of epidemiology, says the facility will assess whether the HyGreen hand hygiene system from Xhale Inc. (, Gainesville, Fla., "shows significant improvements in such patient outcomes as statistically significant decreases in blood and wound infections."

The HyGreen handwash station is mounted next to each soap dispenser. A bed monitor is placed at every patient bed and a badge is worn by each health care worker. When workers apply the waterless product or soap to their hands, they place their hands under the handwash station. The station confirms that the hand has soap or gel on it while identifying the employee. Simultaneously, a green LED light on the employee badge is illuminated, verifying to the patient and worker that handwashing has occurred.