NHS doctors who fail to wash their hands often enough should face disciplinary procedures according to the Scottish Conservatives.
The party's health spokesman Jackson Carlaw said that stronger action was needed to improve hand hygiene standards as official figures revealed one in ten doctors did not clean their hands enough.
A hygiene audit carried out by the health service showed that overall compliance to standards in Scotland was at 96%. However, this figure chrank to 90% among senior medical staff.
Mr Carlaw said, "We need to consider the possibility of disciplinary action against doctors and anyone else who continually fails to meet hand hygiene standards."
The spokesman, who is also the Scottish Conservatives deputy leader singled out doctors for particular criticism, saying, "It is a real problem that the very people who are supposed to be setting an example on wards are failing so spectacularly to do so."
A Scottish government spokeswoman responded by stating, "Good hand hygiene is recognised as one of the most effective ways of preventing the spread of infections such as Clostridium difficile and MRSA in our hospitals.
"National hand hygiene compliance by NHS staff remains consistently high at 96% but there is no room for complacency."