Grime Scene Investigation

Statewide Effort to Eliminate Spread of Infections

Columbia, S.C., (Sept. 2) – To help prevent grime and fight illness and death on a statewide level, the South Carolina Hospital Association has joined forces with the World Health Organization to undertake the first statewide effort to eliminate the unnecessary spread of infections inside hospitals and throughout our communities.

Each year, an estimated 40 million Americans fall ill from germs transmitted by dirty hands. These illnesses range from the most frightening infections including Hepatitis, MRSA, and HIV, to more common ailments, such as colds, flu and diarrhea. Humans are constantly picking up and spreading disease transmitting germs to ourselves and others.

The program kicked off on September 2 when more than 100 hospital experts in infection control, patient safety, and communications attended a statewide training session at the SCHA headquarters to learn how to become "grime scene investigators" ready to teach members of their communities how good hand washing can actually help save lives.

Coach Mike Pope, a former South Carolina High School Coach of the Year, spoke to the hospital representatives and others in attendance, telling his personal story as a hospital patient who contracted a serious health associated infection that led to the amputation of both his legs. Despite his medical problems and physical limitations, the coach considers himself "the luckiest man in the world" and a man with an important message about the need for effective teamwork in fighting deadly infections. He called on the health care professionals there to put their collective energies into eliminating preventable infections.

09-02-2009 12:00 (EDT)