Gender differences noted in hand hygiene practices among physicians
There are significant gender differences in the perceived barriers to maintaining proper hand hygiene practices among physicians, according to a new study.
Out of 994 physicians who received the survey in July 2018 via email or paper, 201 (20.2%) responded, with 129 (63.5%) being male.
Male physicians identified time constraints, lack of habituation, forgetfulness, and a belief in no significant consequences for not performing hand hygiene as key obstacles.
Female physicians, on the other hand, pointed to pain and dryness of the hands as a notable barrier and expressed a higher discomfort when colleagues did not adhere to hand hygiene protocols.
When asked about strategies to overcome these barriers, 26.6% of respondents identified diversifying the types of hand sanitizers as their top choice, followed by providing reminders (15.6%) and ensuring availability of soap and paper towels in each hospital room (13.0%).
Park SY, Kim J, Lee E, et al. Gender differences in psychosocial determinants of hand hygiene among physicians. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2023;1-6. doi: 10.1017/ice.2023.199. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 37791517.