South Bay Hospital and Brandon Regional Hospital continue to make their “Clean Hands Are Cool Hands” program available to the community. Hand washing remains a key to preventing flu transmission.

Clean Hands Are Cool Hands is a national campaign originally designed to prevent the spread of community acquired Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), common, yet highly contagious bacteria that frequently inhabits a person’s skin or nostrils. The hospitals of HCA West Florida and the HCA Foundation, which is the philanthropic arm of Hospital Corporation of America (HCA), kicked off the program, which includes a public service announcement and an interactive Website featuring Mitchell Musso from the hit Disney show Hannah Montana, educating kids and their parents on the importance of hand washing to prevent the spread of germs in schools.

Public health officials recently sent out warnings to all places where people congregate such as schools, department stores, factories and healthcare facilities as a result of the H1N1 flu outbreak. In particular healthcare officials have encouraged hand sanitizer or access to soap and water for employees, volunteers, and students to encourage regular hand cleaning.

“HCA has been a national leader in developing a comprehensive patient safety program to eliminate healthcare associated MRSA in our hospitals,” said Daniel Miller, president of HCA West Florida Division. “With the growing incidence of community acquired MRSA we are using our expertise to develop information to share with children, parents, and teachers.”

For a free Clean Hands are Cool Hands coloring book call 1-877-4-HCA-DOCS. Visit the Clean Hands are Cool Hands Website at www.cleanhandsarecoolhands.com.

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Jennifer Silverstein
Jennifer is the Assistant Editor at the Osprey Observer, having climbed the corporate ladder from intern in 2007. She graduated from the University of South Florida with a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications. She lives in Channing Park with her husband, Eric, and their two dogs.