Purpose of Technology
The purpose of bathing hospitalized patients with cloths impregnated with the antiseptic 2% chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) is, as part of a comprehensive infection control program, to decrease the number of microorganisms on the skin and to reduce the incidence of potentially preventable hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). While protocols vary, patients are typically cleansed or bathed at regular intervals by a medical-surgical nurse or patient care technician with the 2% CHG cloths according to the package labeling, with the cleansed areas left to dry so that the antiseptic residue remains on the skin.
Does regular in-hospital bathing of patients with 2% CHG cloths in conjunction with standard infection control procedures result in lower rates of HAIs compared with standard bathing practices, including plain soap and water, antiseptic solutions, or nonantimicrobial wash cloths?
Is patient bathing with 2% CHG cloths safe?
Have definitive patient selection criteria been established for the use of 2% CHG cloths?
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