Every November the Health Quality & Safety Commission joins forces with the health and other sectors and consumers for Patient Safety Week to highlight a chosen topic.
For this year’s Patient Safety Week, which runs from 4 to 10 November, the Commission is partnering with ACC and the Ministry of Health to raise awareness about infection prevention and control and the importance of good hand hygiene.
The Commission has developed a range of public and clinician-facing resources based around a gang of illustrated germs.
These guys will be appearing on posters, stickers, medi-boards and across social media during Patient Safety Week, so if you spot viral conjunctivitis, norovirus or any of their cartoon germ mates lurking around your practice in early November, don’t be alarmed!
General practices have a key role to play in sharing the resources and reinforcing the key messages of Patient Safety Week – that hand hygiene is the simplest, most effective way to prevent bugs that cause infections; and that reducing infections lessens the need for antibiotics, therefore reducing the opportunity for germs to develop resistance to them.
As Patient Safety Week is followed by World Antibiotic Awareness Week this year, the focus on minimising antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is particularly relevant.
You can download resources from the Commission website: www.hqsc.govt.nz/patient-safety-week. These include posters for clinicians and patients, available in several languages, which you can put up around your practice.
There are also colouring-in sheets for children. These can be left in waiting rooms and other public areas, and during Patient Safety Week consumers can submit their entry via social media to be in with a chance of winning a prize.
The Commission also has a small quantity of printed resources remaining – email firstname.lastname@example.org to request these.