It’s a daily ritual. You go to the restroom; you wash your hands. You prepare your meals; you wash your hands before and after. Your kids run around outside and should wash up before dinner.

From a healthcare standpoint, there is no avoiding this. “On any given day, about one in 31 hospital patients has at least one healthcare-associated infection.” Janet Glowicz, PhD, RN, and Infection Preventionist explains how vital it is for hand health in the healthcare environments.

Nursing technicians care for ten or more patients during their shifts, requiring them to clean their hands every time they enter or exit a room, before they touch a patient, and after any care is administered. This can be upwards of 100 times during a day! Just think about all the germs that could be passing along, room to room, patient to patient…

Motions that may seem trivial to us, such as touching the corner of a counter or bed rail, are trouble spots for everyone in a healthcare-related position. Bacteria, though not visible to the naked eye, is everywhere. Just because our hands look clean doesn’t mean they are.

The CDC has extensive research behind the importance of washing your hands. By preventing the spread of germs, you are not only protecting yourself, you are protecting others. Simple hand washing can reduce costs and save lives, just look at all the data.

Besides, no one enjoys being sick, and we are all in the business of protecting our loved ones who might be in the hospital or in long-term care. Consider all the good you are doing the next time you walk past a sink or hand-sanitizing station. Those few moments spent washing your hands can make a huge difference.