133. Self- reported versus Observed Facial Protection Equipment (FPE) Use among Healthcare Personnel (HCP) in Outpatient Care and Emergency Departments (OPD/ED)
Session: Oral Abstract Session: Protecting Healthcare Personnel from Viral Respiratory Infections
Thursday, October 3, 2013: 11:06 AM
Room: The Moscone Center: 200-212

Background: Compliance monitoring is a key tool in the assessment of facial protective equipment (FPE) and may be conducted by self-report, or through third party observations. There are few studies comparing self-reported and observed compliance with infection control practices.

Methods: Healthcare personnel (HCP) at 7 institutions enrolled in the Respiratory Protection Effectiveness Clinical Trial (ResPECT), a randomized comparative trial of medical masks and N95 respirators for prevention of occupational exposure to acute respiratory illness. Subjects were instructed to wear the assigned FPE when within 6 ft. of a patient exhibiting respiratory symptoms, referred to as a “respiratory zone”. FPE compliance rates were measured from the subject's self-report of use of FPE when in a respiratory zone and third party observations using Handy Audit®, an electronic monitoring system. Data for the 2012-13 respiratory virus season is presented.

Results: 1,202 participants enrolled and 1,077 completed the study. During the study period, 44,734 workday questionnaires were completed by participants. Among 13,225 responses reporting exposure, 11,814 responses (89.3%) reported wearing FPE during part or all of the time when indicated. A total of 11,466 Handy Audit observations were recorded across 99 outpatient care/emergency departments; 6,039 observations of participants and 5,427 observations of non-participants. There were 968 observations of HCP in a respiratory zone, 541 of participants and 427 of non-participants. Among participants, 219 observations (40.5%) indicated FPE use when in a respiratory zone, whereas, of non-participants 33 observations (7.7%) recorded FPE use.

Conclusion: Self-reported FPE compliance was significantly higher than observed compliance. This is consistent with most studies of hand hygiene behavior in HCP, although one study showed similarity between self- reported and observed handwashing. There was a strong association between study participation and higher observed compliance, possibly due to training and perceived risk of respiratory infection, both of which are factors shown to affect compliance with infection control practices. Further research must be conducted to improve FPE compliance.


Stefanie Tuder, BS, Infectious Disease, VA-Eastern Colorado Healthcare System, Denver, CO, Jill Adams, BSN, BA, Infectious Disease, VA- Eastern Colorado Healthcare System, Denver, CO, Cynthia Gibert, MD, MSc, Washington, DC, VAMC, Washington, DC, Ann-Christine Nyquist, MD, MSPH, University of Colorado, Denver, CO, Trish M. Perl, MD, MSc, FIDSA, FSHEA, Medicine, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD, Connie Price, MD, Denver Health Medical Center, Denver, CO, Lewis Radonovich, MD, University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL, Nicholas G Reich, PhD, Biostatistics, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, Maria Rodriguez-Barradas, MD, Medicine- Infectious Disease, Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center and Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, Michael Simberkoff, MD, VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, New York, NY, Mary Bessesen, MD, VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System and University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver, CO and The ResPECT Study Team


S. Tuder, None

J. Adams, None

C. Gibert, None

A. C. Nyquist, None

T. M. Perl, None

C. Price, None

L. Radonovich, None

N. G. Reich, None

M. Rodriguez-Barradas, None

M. Simberkoff, None

M. Bessesen, None

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