RESEARCH ARTICLE

Should we Recommend Stethoscope Disinfection Before Daily Usage as an Infection Control Rule?

The Open Infectious Diseases Journal 6 Aug 2009 RESEARCH ARTICLE DOI: 10.2174/1874279300903010080

Abstract

Background:

Many studies have shown that contaminated medical equipments act like a vector for crossinfection. Infection control programmes are effective in decreasing hospital-acquired infection rate, however, the implementation of such programmes is hindered by poor compliance of health care workers. Methods: Random selection of health care workers, at our institution, was given questionnaires and were asked to give their stethoscopes to be sampled.

Methods:

Random selection of health care workers, at our institution, was given questionnaires and were asked to give their stethoscopes to be sampled.

Results:

151 health care workers were involved in this study. Physicians were 79/151 and their stethoscopes were found to be the most contaminated (68.3%). The total number of contaminated stethoscopes was 72/151 (47.7%). Coagulasenegative staphylococcus was isolated from 66 diaphragms from 72 (92%).

Conclusion:

Nosocomial infections carry a higher level of morbidity and mortality. This study showed that there is lack of good compliance with routinely disinfecting the health care workers stethoscopes. We recommend that the significance of disinfecting diaphragms of stethoscopes should be clarified to the health care workers.

Keywords: Infection control, stethoscopes, medical equipment.
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