Hand hygiene practices and perceptions among healthcare workers in Ghana: A WASH intervention study
Introduction: We aimed to investigate whether the provision of water, sanitation, and hand hygiene (WASH) interventions were associated with changes in hand hygiene compliance and perceptions of healthcare workers towards infection control.
Methodology: The study was conducted from June 2017 through February 2018 among healthcare workers in two Northern districts of Ghana. Using a pretest-posttest design, we performed hand hygiene observations and perception surveys at baseline (before the start of WASH interventions) and post-intervention (midline and endline). We assessed adherence to hand hygiene practice using the WHO direct observation tool. The perception study was conducted using the WHO perception survey for healthcare workers. Study outcomes were compared between baseline, midline and endline assessments.
Results: The hand hygiene compliance significantly improved from 28.8% at baseline through 51.7% at midline (n = 726/1404; 95% CI: 49.1-54.2%) to 67.9% at endline (n = 1000/1471; 95% CI: 65.6-70.3%). The highest increase in compliance was to the WHO hand hygiene moment 5 after touching patients surrounding (relative increase, 205%; relative rate, 3.05; 95% CI: 2.23-4.04; p < 0.0001). Post-intervention, the top three policies deemed most effective at improving hand hygiene practice were: provision of water source (rated mean score, n = 6.1 ± 1.4), participation in educational activities (rated mean score 6.0 ± 1.5); and hand hygiene promotional campaign (6.0 ± 1.3).
Conclusion: Hand hygiene compliance significantly improved post-intervention. Sustaining good hand hygiene practices in low resource settings should include education, the provision of essential supplies, and regular hand hygiene audits and feedback.
Copyright (c) 2019 Appiah Labi, Noah Obeng-Nkrumah, Benjamin Demah Nuertey, Sheila Issahaku, Ndeye Fatou Ndiaye, Peter Baffoe, David Duncan, Priscilla Wobil, Christabel Enweronu-Laryea
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