Open J Psychiatry Allied Sci. 2021;12:43-7. doi: 10.5958/2394-2061.2021.00013.6. Epub 2020 Sep 7.

Knowledge of hand cleanliness among medical students and nurses at tertiary healthcare centre: a cross-sectional study.

Mahanta B, Das DK, Borah P, Mahanta P, Dutta M.


Background: Hand hygiene is documented as one of the foremost techniques to prevent cross-transmission of germs. Objectives: This paper aims to assess the knowledge of hand cleanliness among medical students and working nurses. Methods: It was a cross-sectional descriptive study, carried over a sample selected by non-probability convenient sampling technique. The questionnaire used here to assess the knowledge and practice on hand hygiene was adapted from the World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines on Hand Hygiene in Health Care. The data thus collected were presented in terms of counts and percentages. Chi-square test was used to test the significance of the differences, and a p-value of less than 0.05 was considered as statistically significant. Results: Overall, 92.08% of participants have received training in handwashing. Twenty-five (41.60%) medical students believed that the microbes already present with the patient were responsible for hospital-acquired infection (HAI). Medical students had significantly higher knowledge than working nurses regarding dryness of skin due to hand rubbing over handwashing (p<0.05). Medical students also had substantially higher awareness about the performance of handwashing and hand rubbing in sequence (p<0.05), which they think was not right. Knowledge on the colonisation of hands with harmful microbes was more with the nurses. Conclusion: There is a need to increase awareness among medical students and nurses regarding procedural hand hygiene methods to prevent HAI. The current findings can be a basis for conducting a training programme on hand hygiene practices for the medical students, including paramedical staff members.


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