Hand hygiene edutainment via YouTube

We’re always seeking new and engaging ways to deliver IPC-related education. An interesting study in AJIC provides a useful framework to evaluate and assess the education content of YouTube videos aiming to deliver hand hygiene education.

The authors used simple search terms to query YouTube for hand hygiene education videos for healthcare professionals, then spent a couple of fun afternoons and evenings viewing the 70 videos that met their inclusion criteria. Videos were categorised as educationally useful or not by using structured (although ultimately subjective) criteria. Unsurprisingly, educationally useful videos scored significantly higher for comprehension and persuasiveness although not for attractiveness; there’s a lot of pretty, useless YouTube videos out there.

I was surprised and a bit disappointed to see that the educationally useful videos did not score better for number of views in total or per day. I like the idea that medical education on social media has a ‘self-correcting’ characteristic, whereby the rubbish doesn’t get amplified but the good stuff does. This doesn’t seem to be the case in this study.

Finally, I’ve done some investigative YouTubing myself. I ran the same search terms as the authors (“hand hygiene” and “hand hygiene education”) and selected the most liked video to come to what should be the best hand hygiene education video out there. And here it is…

There’s much about this video that I like. The concept of visualising the invisible threat is a powerful one. And the tag line works for me too: “Wash your hands – it just makes sense”!


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