Bugs on Cuffs and Pockets: A Cross-sectional Study of the Contamination of Healthcare Personnel Attire at Salmanyia Medical Complex
Background: Hospital acquired infections increase the morbidity and mortality of the inpatient population. Pathogens like Staphylococcus aureus and Enterococci are transmitted by direct contact or transmitted by fomites such as healthcare personnel’s attires. This is a cross-sectional study aimed to explore the prevalence ofcontamination of the attires of healthcare personnel working atSalmanyia Medical Complex.
Method: We randomly selected 100 doctors and nurses working in different departmentsand swabbed their attire's sleeves and pockets. We then stored both swabs in their accompanying syringe that contains a bacterial transportation media, and sent them to the lab for culturing. SPSS 23 was used for data entry and analysis. After that, percentages and frequencies were computed for different categorical variables, and a cross-tabulation was computed between each two categorical variables. Chi-Squared test was used to determine whether there were significant relationships between each two categorical variables.
Results:Of the total samples, 44 pocket and 45 cuff samples were contaminated with staphylococcus epidermidis (skin flora). Thirty eight participants were found to have contamination of both the cuff and pocket. Nurseshad slightly higher prevalence of cuff contamination than doctors (P=0.032). Amongst doctors, surgeons had the highest prevalence (P=0.006).
Discussion:Compared to the data available in the literature, our data did not reveal contamination with significant pathogens such as staphylococcus aureus or MRSA.Nevertheless, contamination with staphylococcus epidermidis could be whether from autoinoculation or contamination from the hospital environment and could correlate to level of hygiene. Frequent washing of attire doesn’t reduce the level of contamination.
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