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Chapter I
THE PROBLEM

Introduction

We are always surrounded by bacteria and germs and these can sometimes contribute to the development and spread of infections. Infections can be potentially very harmful so it is important to try and control and prevent the spread of infection, especially in areas such as hospitals where patients are alreadqy ill and therefore susceptible to infection.

Infection prevention and control is the clinical application of microbiology in practice. Infection or disease may be caused by bacteria, fungi, viruses or prions and can result in a wide variety of infections, for example, urinary tract, wound, respiratory, blood, bone and skin infections. Not all infections are transmissible but some such as C. difficile, influenza and norovirus have the potential to spread from one patient to another causing infection with additional significant implications for healthcare organizations/facilities or nursing homes. Understanding how infections occur and how different micro-organisms act and spread is crucial to preventing infections. As nurses, midwives and healthcare assistants, prevention is our primary aim.

Infection prevention and control is an integral component of nursing care delivery in any setting to reduce risks for morbidity and mortality in patients and care givers at all levels. Basic principles of infection prevention are simple and include personal hygiene and hand washing. Nurses share responsibility with other health care personnel for infection risk reduction in patients across entire continuum of care and play vital role in reducing risks for infection through a variety of direct care activities. The health care market place is rapidly changing with far reaching effects on how we as nurses practice our craft. These changes include integrating infection control into daily nursing care both in hospitals and in the growing field of professional nursing in the home.

Prevention and control of nosocomial infection are essential parts of nursing care. Many of Florence Nightingale’s innovations in health care were concerned with eradicating environmental factors that influenced the development of infection. Environmental factors form one aspect in the chain of infection that must be broken by good nursing care. Staff education is an important component of the hospital infection control programme. The efficiency of infection control measures is highly dependent on the compliance of the hospital staff. To secure their compliance, education is needed to inform the staff and to convince them that these measures are really worthwhile. Without an effective in-service education programme, the work of infection control be rendered ineffective.

The purpose of this study is to determine the knowledge, skills, and attitude on infection control practices among staff nurses in Metro Vigan.

The outcome of this study will serve as a basis for the staff nurses and even the student nurses on how to prevent and control infection not only in the hospitals but as well as in their homes. It will also give information for higher authorities to observe the implementation of infection control program.

Statement of the Problem

This study determines the level of knowledge, skills and attitude on infection control practices among staff nurses in Metro Vigan.

It seeks to answer the following specific questions:
1. What is the profile of the staff nurses in terms of the following: A. Socio – Demographic Factors
a. age,
b. sex,
c. civil status, and
d. educational attainment;

B. Work Related Factors
a. employment status,
b. length of service,
c. monthly salary,
d. area of assignment, and
e. number of trainings/seminars attended;
C. Hospital Related Factors
a. category of hospital’s accreditation by DOH, and
b. type of the hospital?

2. What is the level of knowledge, skills, and attitude on infection control practices among...
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