Improving Hand Hygiene (Hh) Compliance And Its Clinical Implications In Medical Students

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IMPROVING HAND HYGIENE (HH) COMPLIANCE AND ITS CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS IN MEDICAL STUDENTS

Abstract

Objective. The study was conducted to study the impact of various measures instituted to improve hand hygiene practices of the medical students after having documented poor hand hygiene awareness and compliance in a study conducted in 2012. Methods. A self-designed questionnaire based on World Health Organization’s concept of “Five Moments for Hand Hygiene” was used to evaluate the awareness of the indications of hand hygiene. Compliance was observed during Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) sessions. Fifty-one students participated voluntarily in the study. Results. The awareness and compliance of hand hygiene among the medical students in 2014 had shown statistically significant improvement (P < 0.005) as compared to figures of the study conducted in 2012. Conclusion. Dedicated multifaceted intervention can improve the hand hygiene practices in medical students.

1. Introduction

Hand hygiene is globally acclaimed to be the most cost-effective method for preventing the spread of antimicrobial resistance and reducing healthcare-associated infections (HCAIs) []. In a study conducted in 2012, it was found that there were significant deficiencies in the hand hygiene practices of the medical students in Qassim College of Medicine, Saudi Arabia, which needed to be rectified []. Various remedial measures were adopted and a follow-up study was conducted from January to March 2014 to study the impact of those measures. The remedial measures included

  1. incorporation of hand hygiene in the prescribed syllabus, at various levels;
  2. application of perfect hand hygiene practices by teaching faculty, to convey the message by example;
  3. incorporation of hand hygiene in examination checklist of OSCE stations;
  4. regular feedback/reminders to students erring in hand hygiene practices;
  5. dissemination of YouTube links to clips on application of hand hygiene by leading institutions of the world, followed by classroom discussion on these clips;
  6. distribution/pasting of posters (at bedside teaching stations) based on the “Five Moments for Hand Hygiene” concept in English and local (Arabic) language;
  7. dedication of some faculty members to hand hygiene promotion programme.

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