Understanding healthcare workers self-reported practices, knowledge and attitude about hand hygiene in a medical setting in rural India

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Abstract

© 2016 Diwan et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Aim To describe self-reported practices and assess knowledge and attitudes regarding hand hygiene among healthcare workers in a rural Indian teaching hospital. Setting A rural teaching hospital and its associated medical and nursing colleges in the district of Ujjain, India. Method The study population consisted of physicians, nurses, teaching staff, clinical instructors and nursing students. Self-administered questionnaires based on the World Health Organization Guidelines on Hand Hygiene in Healthcare were used. Results Out of 489 healthcare workers, 259 participated in the study (response rate = 53%). The proportion of healthcare workers that reported to 'always' practice hand hygiene in the selected situations varied from 40-96% amongst categories. Reported barriers to maintaining good hand hygiene were mainly related to high workload, scarcity of resources, lack of scientific information and the perception that priority is not given to hand hygiene, either on an individual or institutional level. Previous training on the topic had a statistically significant association with self-reported practice (p = 0.001). Ninety three per cent of the respondents were willing to attend training on hand hygiene in the near future. Conclusion Self-reported knowledge and adherence varied between situations, but hand hygiene practices have the potential to improve if the identified constraints could be reduced. Future training should focus on enhancing healthcare workers' knowledge and understanding regarding the importance of persistent practice in all situations.

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Diwan, V., Gustafsson, C., Klintz, S. R., Joshi, S. C., Joshi, R., Sharma, M., … Lundborg, C. S. (2016). Understanding healthcare workers self-reported practices, knowledge and attitude about hand hygiene in a medical setting in rural India. PLoS ONE, 11(10). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0163347

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