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Qual Improv Health Care > Volume 21(1); 2015 > Article
Quality Improvement in Health Care 2015;21(1): 36.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.14371/QIH.2015.21.1.36    Published online June 30, 2015.
Factors affecting hand hygiene behavior among health care workers of intensive care units in teaching hospitals in Korea: importance of cultural and situational barriers
Heon-jae Jeong1, Heui-sug Jo2, Hye-jean Lee3, Min-ji Kim4, Hye-yeon Yoon5
1Department of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
2Department of Health Management and Policy, School of Medicine, Kangwon National University
3Department of Preventive Medicine, Kangwon National University Hospital
4Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania
5Center for Patient Education, The Care Quality Research Group
Abstract
In Intensive Care Units (ICUs), where severely ill patients are treated, importance of reducing Hospital Acquired Infection (HAI) cannot be overstated. One of the simplest and most effective actions against HAI is proper hand hygiene (HH) behavior of Health Care Workers (HCWs). However, compliance varies across different cultures and different job types of HCWs (physicians, residents and nurses). This study aims to understand determinants of HH behavior by HCWs' job types in Korea. Qualitative analysis was performed based on Reasoned Action Approach style interviews with staff physicians, residents and nurses across 7 teaching hospitals. We found that all HCWs strongly believe HH is important in reducing HAI. There were, however, job type-specific HH behavior modifying factors; staff physicians stated feeling pressure to be HH behavior role model. Residents identified Quality Improvement team that measured compliance as a facilitator; a notable barrier for residents was senior physicians not washing their hands, because they were afraid of appearing impudent to their seniors. Nurses designated their chief nurse as a key referent. All participants mentioned heavy workload and lack of access to alcohol-based sanitizer as situational barriers, and sore and dry hand as deterrents to HH compliance.
Key words Patient safety;Hand Hygiene;Hospital acquired infection;Intensive Care Unit (ICU);Safety culture;Reasoned action approach;
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