University essay from Jönköping University/HHJ, Avd. för omvårdnad; Jönköping University/HHJ, Avd. för omvårdnad

Abstract: SUMMARY Background: The practice of hand hygiene by nurses is important in preventing and decreasing hospital-associated infections. There are guidelines from WHO available about correct hand hygiene and it is not clear if nurses in low-income countries follow these guidelines. Aim: The aim of this review was to describe the challenges related to hand hygiene these nurses experience. Method: A qualitative literature review was conducted using twelve articles that were analysed using Friberg’s five-step analysis. The search was done in databases CINAHL, MEDLINE and PubMed. Results: The results were categorised into three categories; Challenges in education, Challenges in the working environment and Challenges in compliance. Most nurses in low-income countries were well-informed about hand hygiene, but many had undermined the practice due to lack of regular training, lack of necessary resources, feedback and role models. Conclusion: The study revealed that these nurses had knowledge about hand hygiene, although some of them showed confusion in hand hygiene products and routine. The review identified hindrances to effective hand hygiene practices in low-income countries. Regular courses about effective hand hygiene for nurses are recommended. Further research on qualitative data on hand hygiene while focusing on nurses’ experience in low-income countries is needed. 

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