1) Everyone has the same shared understanding of the problem
~ Knowing what to do – protocols around handwashing
~ Adopting this – so it becomes a strong part of the culture
~ Something we can do as a team is something we can be proud of.
~ The biggest enemy is invisible. The best thing we can do doesn’t seem obvious
~ Need a shared understanding - Open discussion to know what people understand and what they’re worried about
~ Use handover times and expand to second meeting at end of a shift to collect info and feedback
2) Lead by example from the top
~ Ask the CEO, board members, doctors to make a display of how important it is to wash hands
~ Watch people lead by example
3) Choose a leader from within the ranks
~ A manager sends an email, provides online learning and ticks a box saying infection control is complete
~ A leader is a person, no matter what their qualifications, remains the most motivated, loves their job and the staff the most. Need a role model
~ Give the leader the right vision – don’t make it reactionary (don’t be scared), want to become known for never compromising infection control
~ Do it for people
~ Make it competitive – chance to prove you’re the best aged care facility in the area, state, country, world
~ Empower the leader to shift the culture – show that the CEO considers this work is very important and that their work should be listened to
~ Look past paper qualifications and look at personal attributes
4) Make everything available
~ Hand sanitizer everywhere. PPE where needed. Cleaning chemicals. Everything required to do the job without compromise.
5) Teach, Re-teach, repeat, and be proud of it
~ Best way to learn anything is to do it multiple times a day, at every opportunity and to do it together with other people
~ Don’t learn from a book
~ At beginning and end of every shift, huddle process where group gets together
~ Wash hands together, sing song together – remind each we’re washing hands together right now to save lives
~ Only become good a skill by repetition. Think of the skill of hand washing in the same way you think of a skill of learning a musical instrument
~ We all know how to do it, and now is the time to do it properly every time we wash our hands
~ The Japanese have a great ritual whenever a new customer enters a restaurant, all the staff shout IRASSHAMASE which means 'Welcome to the Store'
6) Have a system to evaluate infection control
~ Feedback – beginning, during and end of the shift
i. Important at end of shift – are there enough supplies, are there enough handwashing sinks, what are some of the barriers
ii. Did anyone have any issues, did anyone see anyone else having issues?
iii. How can we help to do things better? Look after each other?
~ Everyone hates being policed. But it's also important to help each other improve.
~ Ask after the health and wellbeing of the person
~ Be mindful of body language and how you present yourself
7) Build a check point
~ Coordinate entry and exits as a check point with fixed process
~ Someone at each check point (entrance) checking temperature and asking the COVID-19 questions – most places already do this
~ Add on supervising handwashing
8) Work as a team to support your staff and be proud of your work
~ Walk the talk
~ Ask after each other, help each other out
~ Support staff staying at home if they’re unwell, support them getting tested and follow up with them
~ We are very proud of staff and people working in aged care
Infection control is going to be the thing that saves lives