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Engaging Patients in the Prevention of Health-Care Associated Infections: A Survey of Patients' Awareness, Knowledge, and Perceptions Regarding the Risks and Consequences of Infection with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile

Item

Title

Engaging Patients in the Prevention of Health-Care Associated Infections: A Survey of Patients' Awareness, Knowledge, and Perceptions Regarding the Risks and Consequences of Infection with Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile

Date

2013

Volume

41

Bibliographic Citation

41 Am. J. Infect. Control 322 (Apr. 2013)

Abstract

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections and Clostridium difficile infections (CDI) are major health care-associated infections (HAIs). Little is known about patients' knowledge of these HAIs. Therefore, we surveyed patients to determine awareness, knowledge, and perceptions of MRSA infections and CDI. DESIGN: An interviewer-administered questionnaire. Setting: A tertiary care academic medical center. Participants: Adult patients who met at least one of the following criteria: at risk of CDI or MRSA infection, current CDI or colonization or current MRSA infection or colonization, or history of CDI or MRSA infection. Methods: Two unique surveys were developed and administered to 100 patients in 2011. Results: Overall, 76% of patients surveyed were aware of MRSA, whereas 44% were aware of C difficile. The strongest predictor of patients' awareness of these infections was having a history of HAI. Patients with a history of HAI were significantly more likely to have heard of both MRSA (odds ratio, 13.29; 95% confidence interval, 2.84-62.14; P = .001) and C difficile (odds ratio, 9.78; 95% confidence interval, 2.66-35.95; P = .001), than those patients without a history of HAI. There was also a significant positive association between having a history of HAI and greater knowledge of the risk factors, health consequences, and prevention techniques relative to CDI and MRSA infections. Conclusions: There are additional opportunities to engage patients about the risks and consequences of MRSA and CDIs, particularly those without a history of HAI.