270642 Worksite Hand Hygiene: Piloting a Survey to Understand Self-Reported Practices, Knowledge, and Beliefs of Employees

Monday, October 29, 2012

Maggie Stedman-Smith, PhD, MPH, MS, RN , College of Public Health, Kent State University, Kent, OH
Cathy DuBois, PhD , College of Business Administration, Kent State University, Kent, OH
Scott Grey, PhD , Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, College of Public Health, Kent State University, Kent, OH
Hand hygiene interventions in the community at elementary schools, day care centers, and private homes have reduced the spread of infectious disease. Despite the considerable burden of illness, absenteeism and presenteeism in the workplace, along with government recommendations for the performance of hand hygiene in the workplace as one strategy to prevent seasonal influenza and pandemics, a paucity of peer-reviewed hand hygiene worksite intervention studies exists. Moreover, little is known about the usual hand hygiene practices of employees. This research describes the results of a pilot survey conducted among employees from 39 bank branches in Ohio. The objectives of the study were threefold: (1) develop an understanding of the knowledge, behaviors, and beliefs about hand hygiene performance among employees in the workplace; (2) test the Theory of Planned Behavior to predict hand hygiene behaviors and health outcomes; and (3) generate information for the development of future workplace hand hygiene interventions. The highest reported hand hygiene practice was performed after using the rest room, while the two lowest practices were performed after sharing keyboards and pens. Slightly less than 20% reported not routinely performing hand hygiene after handling currency. Significant predictors of hand hygiene practices included behavioral beliefs about benefits and normative beliefs about the expectations of peers, the public, and the employer. The findings show a need for hand hygiene improvement, and support utilization of beliefs about the positive outcomes of performing hand hygiene and normative expectations for performing hand hygiene to steer the development of multifaceted worksite interventions.

Learning Areas:
Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
Learners will be able to explain how the Theory of Planned Behavior may be useful to guide the development of worksite hand hygiene interventions to promote the health of employees.

Keywords: Health Promotion, Worksite

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a Ph.D. and an M.P.H. in Environmental Health Sciences with a clinical subspecialty in occupational health nursing. I also have an M.S. in public health nursing and over 10 years of clinical experience. I was the Co-Principle Investigator of this worker hand hygien pilot survey.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.