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Press Release


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Contact: Patty Charvat, MHA, 978-318-9375 or 978-273-7764 (cell),

Maryland Patient Safety Center to Lead Statewide Hospital Effort to Prevent Infections
New Collaborative Focuses on Improving Hand Hygiene

November 3, 2009 - The Maryland Hospital Hand Hygiene Collaborative, officially launched today by Lt. Governor Anthony Brown and Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) Secretary John Colmers, is being led by the Maryland Patient Safety Center (MPSC) with the participation of Maryland hospitals.  Based on the work and recommendations made by the Maryland Health Quality and Cost Council, the goal of this initiative is to prevent healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

“This initiative couldn’t be more timely given the onset of seasonal flu and the increasing incidence of H1NI,” said William Minogue, MD, MPSC Executive Director. “Hand hygiene is a known key factor for preventing the spread of infection in both healthcare settings and the community.”

The Collaborative will build on the hand hygiene programs and initiatives already underway in Maryland hospitals.  Two key objectives of the Collaborative are to standardize the measurement of hand hygiene compliance within each hospital and to drive improvement efforts.  Through the Hand Hygiene Collaborative, hospitals will share best practices, learn from each other, and be able to compare their progress over time.

“By working in a coordinated, statewide approach we can ensure a much greater impact on hand hygiene in all Maryland hospitals,” said Dr. Minogue.

The Collaborative is being supported, in part, by funds received by the DHMH to support surveillance and prevention of HAIs, which were made available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Launched at the recommendation of the Governor’s Health Quality & Cost Council, all Maryland hospitals are invited to participate in this initiative.  Other partner organizations are the Maryland Hospital Association, Delmarva Foundation for Medical Care, DHMH, the Maryland Health Care Commission, and the John Hopkins Center for Innovation in Quality Care.

“The Maryland Patient Safety Center is proud of Maryland hospitals' commitment and is pleased to lead their collective efforts to improve hand hygiene," said Dr. Minogue.

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About the Maryland Patient Safety Center
The Maryland Patient Safety Center, jointly supported by the Maryland Hospital Association and the Delmarva Foundation, brings together hospitals and health care providers to improve patient safety and health care quality for all Marylanders.  The goal of the Patient Safety Center is to make Maryland's health care the safest in the nation by focusing on the systems of care, reducing the occurrence of adverse events, and improving the culture of patient safety at Maryland health care facilities.  For further information, visit