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Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile) poses a major challenge to the healthcare system. We assessed factors that should be considered when designing subprocesses of a C. difficile infection (CDI) prevention bundle.
Phenomenological qualitative study.
We conducted 3 focus groups of environmental services (EVS) staff, physicians, and nurses to assess their perspectives on a CDI prevention bundle. We used the Systems Engineering Initiative for Patient Safety (SEIPS) model to examine 5 subprocesses of the CDI bundle: diagnostic testing, empiric isolation, contact isolation, hand hygiene, and environmental disinfection. We coded transcripts to the 5 SEIPS elements and ensured scientific rigor. We sought to determine common, unique, and conflicting factors across stakeholder groups and subprocesses of the CDI bundle.
Each focus group lasted 1.5 hours on average. Common work-system barriers included inconsistencies in knowledge and practice of CDI management procedures; increased workload; poor setup of aspects of the physical environment (eg, inconvenient location of sinks); and inconsistencies in CDI documentation. Unique barriers and facilitators were related to specific activities performed by the stakeholder group. For instance, algorithmic approaches used by physicians facilitated timely diagnosis of CDI. Conflicting barriers or facilitators were related to opposing objectives; for example, clinicians needed rapid placement of a patient in a room while EVS staff needed time to disinfect the room.
A systems engineering approach can help to holistically identify factors that influence successful implementation of subprocesses of infection prevention bundles.
Transmission of pathogens within the hospital environment remains a hazard for hospitalized patients. Healthcare personnel clothing and devices carried by them may harbor pathogens and contribute to the risk of pathogen transmission.
To examine bacterial contamination of healthcare personnel attire and commonly used devices.
Of 1,175 studies screened, 72 individual studies assessed contamination of a variety of items, including white coats, neckties, stethoscopes, and mobile electronic devices, with varied pathogens including Staphylococcus aureus, including methicillin-resistant S. aureus, gram-negative rods, and enterococci. Contamination rates varied significantly across studies and by device but in general ranged from 0 to 32% for methicillin-resistant S. aureus and gram-negative rods. Enterococcus was a less common contaminant. Few studies explicitly evaluated for the presence of Clostridium difficile. Sampling and microbiologic techniques varied significantly across studies. Four studies evaluated for possible connection between healthcare personnel contaminants and clinical isolates with no unequivocally direct link identified.
Further studies to explore the relationship between healthcare personnel attire and devices and clinical infection are needed.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2016;1–7
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