WHO Patient Safety


The 2nd phase of the Clean Care is Safer Care global initiative is comprised of
mainly two distinct program policies. The first one targets the local Ministry of Health of
each member country through a pledge to the first Global Patient Safety challenge.
The second policy directly targets healthcare settings through the registration to the global Save Lives, Clean Your Hands campaign. This phase started in 2005 shortly after the Clean Care is Safer Care initiative was launched.

1. Pledge to the first Global Patient Safety challenge

The pledge engages each country into signing and committing to reducing healthcare associated infections (HCAI) through the accomplishment of the following:

• Acknowledging the importance of HCAI

• Hand hygiene campaigns at national or sub-national levels

• Sharing experiences and available surveillance data

• Using WHO strategies and guidelines

Didier Pittet, head of the Clean Care is Safer Care Global Patient Safety Challenge attending the signing of the pledge by MERCOSUR countries in Montevideo, Uruguay on November 30th 2007.

Since the Clean Care is Safer Care global initiative was established in 2005, 124 countries have so far signed the pledge including Japan.


CleanHandsNet: Another initiative launched to encourage States to mobilize for hand hygiene.


Alongside the pledge engaging countries, the WHO has also been active in mobilizing nations since 2007 through the CleanHandsNet initiative1. This initiative encourages the sharing of national or regional hand hygiene campaigns on a dedicated network to both promote and endorse those registered campaigns in their respective geographical area and to also provide politicians with ideas on how to set up their own hand hygiene campaign.

At the moment 43 national/regional hand hygiene campaigns have been registered through the CleanHandsNet initiative.

2. Save Lives, Clean Your Hands Campaign

ddThe Save Lives, Clean Your Hands campaign is an online registration program active since 2009 which any healthcare facility in the world can register to.

The program includes the following features:

• A network through which the WHO may directly reach healthcare facilities to communicate the latest developments in hand hygiene practices.

• A network through which hospitals may share their initiatives and feedback regarding hand hygiene practice, thus providing the WHO with useful data and information to improve initiatives in the promotion of implementing efficient hand hygiene practices.

• Information regarding the May 5th annual hand hygiene day.

As of September, 2011 the Save Lives, Clean Your Hands online campaign has 14,338 members located in 151 countries. Most of members come from 1. France (2502), 2. USA (2484), 3. Philippines (2009). Japan is amongst one of the lowest contributor coming from developed countries with only 19 members.

The 2nd phase, Mobilizing Nations, of the Clean Care is Safer Care Global Patient Safety initiative has been a great success with accumulating national support in many countries. Thanks the success of the 2nd phase, the WHO has developed a dense network of supporters who provide a diverse range of experiences in improving hand hygiene practice world wide with new practices and recommendations in regard to the level of healthcare and cultural considerations.

The 3rd phase of the Clean Care is Safer Care initiative called Technical Guidelines and Tools aims at providing all the tools necessary for implementing efficient hand hygiene practices through players who signed on in the 2nd phase, Mobilizing Nations. In addition, the WHO provides tools and guidelines through its website to all who are interested in the latest developments and recognized best practices on hand hygiene.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 November 2011 06:29