Survey reveals poor healthcare hand hygiene compliance in India

28th of December 2020
Survey reveals poor healthcare hand hygiene compliance in India

A survey carried out in India has revealed that healthcare workers are routinely failing to wash their hands for the required 20 seconds.

And 32 per cent of them do not sanitise their hands after coming into contact with patients or their surroundings.

Nearly 1,000 health workers were polled in a month-long survey carried out by doctors from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi. The survey, which took place in August, covered a range of state-run and private establishments and spanned both urban and rural settings.

A total of 47 per cent of the respondents admitted to failings in following proper hand hygiene protocols. "Our experience showed that healthcare workers tend to get lax over a period of time," said study author Dr Piyush Ranjan.

More than half of those questioned admitted to social distancing failures when speaking with colleagues, while 21 per cent said they were continuing to shake hands despite the transmission risk.

And 59 per cent of healthcare workers said they used their mobile phones both at work and at home. "Doctors are carrying the same mobile phone to ICUs and then to their homes," said Dr Anoop Misra, editor of the magazine that published the study.

Compliance was higher when it came to wearing masks, with 88 per cent of respondents claiming to routinely wear them inside healthcare settings. Hand hygiene and social distancing lapses were attributed to cramped conditions, a poor level of knowledge and difficulties in altering entrenched habits.


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