Caricature courtesy of Alhumaid, et al. (2021)
Alhumaid, et al. (2021) acknowledge that, "Knowledge of infection prevention and control (IP&C) procedures among healthcare workers (HCWs) is crucial for effective IP&C. Compliance with IPC measures has critical implications for HCWs safety, patient protection and the care environment." The researchers discuss the body of available literature regarding HCWs' knowledge of IP&C and highlight potential factors that may influence compliance to IP&C precautions.
Overall, the researchers indicate that the level of HCW knowledge of IP&C appears to be adequate, good, and/or high concerning standard precautions, hand hygiene, and care pertaining to urinary catheters. Acceptable levels of knowledge were also detected in regard to IP&C measures for specific diseases including TB, MRSA, MERS-CoV, COVID-19 and Ebola. However, gaps were identified in HCWs' knowledge concerning occupational vaccinations, the modes of transmission of infectious diseases, and the risk of infection from needlesticks and sharps injuries. Several factors for noncompliance surrounding IPC guidelines are discussed, as are recommendations for improving adherence to those guidelines.
The researchers say that embracing a multi-faceted approach toward improving IP&C-intervention strategies is highly suggested, the goal being to improve compliance among HCWs with IP&C measures.
Alhumaid S, et al. Knowledge of infection prevention and control among healthcare workers and factors influencing compliance: a systematic review. Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control. Vol. 10, article number 86. 2021.