After wearing powdered gloves, healthcare workers (HCWs) are expected to wash their hands instead of using alcohol-based handrub (ABHR). Washing hands takes longer than using ABHR, and the use of powdered gloves may be an obstacle to hand-hygiene compliance. This study by Menegueti, et al. (2021) aimed to evaluate the impact of replacing powdered gloves with powder-free gloves on hand-hygiene compliance among HCW of an intensive care unit (ICU).
A quasi-experimental study was conducted in a general ICU of a tertiary care university hospital in Brazil. From June 1 to July 15, 2017, all HCWs were provided with powdered latex gloves only for all clinical procedures. From July 15 to Aug. 31, 2017, HCWs were provided with nitrile powder-free gloves only. Hand hygiene compliance was assessed through direct observation, and evaluated according to the World Health Organization Hand Hygiene guidelines. The researchers calculated that a sample size of 544 hand hygiene opportunities needed to be observed per period. Data analysis were performed using the STATA SE® version 14, and they compared the individual’s percentage of compliance using the t test for paired data before and after the intervention.
Overall, 40 HCWs were assessed before and after the introduction of nitrile powder-free gloves, with 1114 and 1139 observations of hand hygiene opportunities, respectively. The proportion of compliance with hand hygiene was 55% (95% confidence interval [CI] 51–59%) using powdered latex gloves and 60% (95% CI 57–63%) using powder-free gloves. The difference in proportions between the two types of gloves was 5.1% (95% CI 2.5–7.6%, p < 0.001).
The researchers say their data indicate that replacing powdered gloves with powder-free gloves positively influenced hand-hygiene compliance by HCWs in an ICU setting.
Reference: Menegueti MG, et al. Impact of replacing powdered gloves with powder-free gloves on hand-hygiene compliance among healthcare workers of an intensive care unit: a quasi-experimental study. Antimicrobial Resistance & Infection Control. Vol. 10, No. 6. 2021.