Patient Preferences of Hand Sanitizers
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. College of Nursing Honors Theses; 2015
Hand washing and the use of alcohol-based hand rubs are recognized as the best ways to prevent infection. While prior work has emphasized the role of hand hygiene for healthcare workers, there is increasing evidence that patients may also be important in transmitting infection. However, no prior studies have considered patient preferences for these products and patients may have different perspectives on features of these products that make them acceptable for use. The goal of this study was to evaluate hospitalized patients’ preferences for hand sanitizers. A tool was developed to assess important characteristics of hand sanitizers from the perspective of the patient. Twenty patients compared two hand sanitizers each using a standardized survey and rated product characteristics. After rating two hand sanitizers, patients were asked to select a product to keep at the bedside to determine final preference. Patients ranged in age from 27 years old to 77 years old (mean 51.1, SD 16.8). Eleven males (55%) and 9 (45%) females participated. The majority (70%) of patients worked at least part time and 5% had at least some college education. Seven (35%) patients preferred gel products and 13 (65%) patients preferred foam hand sanitizers. For the patients under the age of 50, 80% preferred foam compared to 20% who preferred the gel. In contrast, in patients over age 50, 50% preferred the foam over the gel. The presence of rashes, hobbies, work related activities, occupation, gender, and presence of a skin condition were not related to preference. Ease of use and application of the product were significantly different between foams and gels. The mean ease of use rating for gel was 4.50 compared to 4.96 for foam(p-value=0.04). Gels were rated lower in application compared to foam (4.21 vs. 4.85; p=0.005). Demographic variables were not associated with patient preferences in hand sanitizers, however ease of use and application influenced patient product ratings. We have demonstrated the usefulness of a modified version of the World Health Organization’s method of evaluating hand hygiene product preference in patients. Further work should use a larger sample size in order to determine which products patients prefer and test a broader range of products.
Academic Major: Nursing
The Pressey Honors Endowment Fund presented by The OSU Honors and Scholars Department
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