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AJN On the Cover

Bulman, Alison senior editorial coordinator

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: December 2011 - Volume 111 - Issue 12 - p 22
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000408175.50478.38
AJN On the Cover

At first glance, this month's cover might seem like a psychedelic piece of art. But looking a little closer reveals a computer image reflecting contamination on the hand—a pink and blue festival of bacteria, complete with rod-shaped Escherichia coli. Although we would expect to find bacterial pathogens on some hospital surfaces, it turns out they lurk in places we haven't considered—nurses' uniforms, privacy curtains, and the abundance of paper used in nursing charts, reports, and patient files. And just how long do bacterial pathogens survive on paper, a porous substance that can't be easily disinfected? This month's original research article sought to answer this question—an important one, considering that the health care workers who handle these papers are known to be the "most important route of transmission of pathogenic bacteria." For more information, see Survival of Bacterial Pathogens on Paper and Bacterial Retrieval from Paper to Hands: Preliminary Results and also read this month's Editorial on why grandma was right when she told us to wash our hands.—Alison Bulman, senior editorial coordinator

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.