Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Better Clean Hands

Stephen Dubner, author of Freakonomics, was interviewed on "The Takeaway," a morning talk-show. BTW, if you have not listened to it yet, give it a try. It airs the same time as NPR's "Morning Edition." A study of doctors at an Australian hospital using self-reported data on hand-washing rate at 73%. After hiring nurses to spy on the doctors, the study revealed an astounding hand-washing rate of 9%. If you want to listen to this interview (6:20 long - 5:30 into the piece), click on "The Takeaway" link.

Better, a book by Atul Gawande, that has as its first chapter "On Washing Hands," gives an alarming inside look at how critical this easy yet complicated procedure is for the medical profession. More on Better later.

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