Behavioral Cuing: Improving Hospital Visitor Hand Hygiene Behaviors [Poster]
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Background: Visitors hand hygiene (VHH) prior to entering intensive care (ICU), telemetry, and intermediate care units is crucial in preventing spread of infections. During the influenza 2018-2019 outbreak, 50% of units' population tested positive for the influenza viruses; adding to the hospital acquired infection rates of the three units. An Agent-Based Model of infection spread approach was used with the goal of preventing infection transmission by hospital visitors in three high risk care units. Specifically, a visitor low dose educational intervention consisting of visual static and verbal cuing was undertaken to improve VHH behavior.
Method: A four-week, pre-post-observational design (N=635) was completed by trained observers during day and nigh shifts for a large tertiary hospital to determine VHH rates. Strategies of visual static cuing included educational posters and patient door signage and verbal cuing to wash and/or sanitize hands by health care workers.
Results: VHH adherence for the ICU was very low at baseline; out of 228 consecutive observations 20% (n=46) adherence was found. After behavioral cuing intervention, 407 observations resulted in 42% adherence to hand washing behaviors.
Conclusion: Low does educational cuing strategies increased VHH behaviors. However, additional public education is needed to decrease infection spread from community sources.