Published: 10/03/2005, Volume II5, No. 5946 Page 20

Kathy Giles, head of occupational therapy, Bronglais General Hospital, Aberystwyth

The current media coverage of infection control focuses on washing hands and improving the cleaning and housekeeping of hospital wards and departments. These campaigns are all very laudable.

However, such efforts may come to nothing if attention is not given to other issues which appear to be getting little coverage and add to the problem of infection transmission - in particular the importance of keeping hair tied back and pinned off the face.

On a recent TV documentary featuring an accident and emergency department I was horrified to see a senior nurse with her hair all over her face and shoulders who brushed her hair back off her face apparently to attend to a seriously injured patient.

She was not the only member of staff in that department who had hair that needed the attention of not only a brush but some hair grips.

Food for thought in the infection control arena.