Knowledge, practices, compliance and beliefs of university nursing students’ toward hand hygiene: A cross-sectional survey
Nursing students can contribute to healthcare-associated infections if having inadequate knowledge and non-compliance of hand hygiene. Effective hand hygiene is considered the most effective measure for preventing healthcare-associated infections. This study investigated the knowledge, practices, compliance, and beliefs of university nursing students toward hand hygiene. By using a well-validated, self-report hand hygiene questionnaire, a cross-sectional survey was performed. In the convenience sampling, 421 out of 506 questionnaires were returned (83.2%). There were 169 (40.14%), 170 (40.38%) and 82 (19.48%) nursing students from Years 1, 2 and 3, respectively. The respondents’ overall mean score for hand hygiene knowledge was 7.33/10 (SD = 1.52) with an increasing trend of knowledge performance along study year was observed. The hand hygiene practice inventory was 4.76/5 (SD = 0.303). The mean scores for respondents from Years 1, 2 and 3 were 4.75 (SD = 0.367), 4.82 (SD = 0.20) and 4.69 (SD = 0.290), respectively. The self-reported hand hygiene compliance rate was 88.17% (SD = 11.922) and the mean score on the health beliefs scale was 4.03/5 (SD = 0.34). The university nursing students demonstrated moderate knowledge, good practices, a high compliance rate and positive beliefs toward hand hygiene. More effort on educating healthcare professionals about alcohol-based hand rubs and the promotion of hand cream usage to prevent hand-hygiene-induced skin irritations are suggested. Regular training workshops or seminars could be arranged to maintain knowledge levels and cultivate a positive attitude toward hand hygiene.