A research journey: undertaking a pilot study of patients' perceptions of healthcare-acquired infections

Mason, Matt, Smyth, Wendy, Abernethy, Gail, Carrucan, Janine, Hayes, Megan, and Shields, Linda (2014) A research journey: undertaking a pilot study of patients' perceptions of healthcare-acquired infections. In: Posters from the Australasian College for Infection Prevention and Control Conference. From: ACIPC 2014: Australasian College for Infection Prevention and Control Conference, 23-26 November 2014, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

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Abstract

Background: The lack of Australian studies about patients' knowledge and perceptions of healthcare-acquired infections provided the impetus for a pilot study in two healthcare facilities in north Queensland. We administered an adaptation of a questionnaire previously used in the United Kingdom to a convenience sample of surgical patients in a tertiary-level North Queensland hospital and a smaller, remote facility in Far North Queensland.

Aim: To describe our experiences of undertaking multi-site research in an Australian setting.in the context of an overview of the research undertaken.

Results: While the inception of the research project was smooth and uneventful, the process of implementing the project was far less so. Seven sites were identified and tentative agreement was obtained to participate during the planning phase of the project. For a variety of reasons, only two sites participated in the pilot study. Issues we encountered included significant changes to health service management teams and difficulties in navigating research and ethical governance structures. The recruitment of participants in the remote site was also particularly challenging, largely due to the irregularity of surgical lists.

Amongst the 29 men and 22 women who completed the questionnaires, awareness of the risk of hospital-acquired infections preoperatively was common (n=42). The majority claimed they had adequate information (n=36) and understanding (n=41), although knowledge of specific bacteria was poor. Doctors, the hospital and television were most frequently nominated as the sources of participants' information; many responded that the media did not accurately portray hospital-acquired infections. Respondents suggested that the availability and use of alcoholic hand-rub by staff and patients, and involving patients in their own care, would assist in preventing hospital-acquired infections.

Conclusion: Multi-site research is a valuable tool for infection prevention and control although not without hurdles. We plan to administer the questionnaire to a larger number of patients across more Australian facilities. Responses will inform interventions to further improve the knowledge and understanding of hospital-acquired infections of future patients.

Item ID: 37144
Item Type: Conference Item (Poster)
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Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2015 02:08
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1110 Nursing > 111003 Clinical Nursing: Secondary (Acute Care) @ 70%
11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1103 Clinical Sciences > 110309 Infectious Diseases @ 30%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920210 Nursing @ 70%
92 HEALTH > 9201 Clinical Health (Organs, Diseases and Abnormal Conditions) > 920109 Infectious Diseases @ 30%
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