Jewellery and Artificial Fingernails: Infection Risk or Urban Legend?

Jewellery and artificial nail use by healthcare workers has been linked to the development of healthcare-acquired infections, although evidence remains weak. As a result, restrictions on their use are not uniform and are often presented as suggestions rather than strict rules. Currently, there is no scientific evidence that has clearly demonstrated a patient infection caused by a microorganism acquired from a healthcare worker associated with jewellery or artificial nails.

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s 5 Million Lives campaign in the United States targeted the potential spread of pathogens from healthcare workers (HCWs) to patients. Jewellery, including rings, watches, and piercings, as well as artificial and polished nails, have been postulated to contribute to the spread of infection. Continue reading