Personal Protective Equipment Safety for Healthcare Workers

Baloh, J., Reisinger, H., Dukes, K., da Silva, J., Salehi, H., Ward, M., Chasco, E., Pennathur, P., & Loreen, H. (2019). Healthcare workers’ strategies for doffing personal protective equipment. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 69(3), 192-198. 

This article describes strategies adapted by healthcare workers in doffing personal protective equipment (PPE). It focuses on medical personnel’s thoughts and perceptions relating to doffing in their daily routine. This entails their approaches to doffing and how well these techniques complement the provided protocols. It was a qualitative study that formed part of a more extensive simulation study using location analysis, task analysis, participant interviews, and basic anthropometry measurements. Through these, the authors purpose to identify the views and practices of healthcare workers towards PPE doffing and assess the practices that they incorporate the most. Additionally, the paper is appropriately structured, which makes reading and understanding easier. The study’s problem statement relates to people’s understanding of doffing practices based on PPE examination for high-consequence agents and the limited knowledge on healthcare workers’ doffing strategies. In addressing this issue, thirty healthcare workers were chosen from a Midwestern academic hospital and assigned to three different scenarios: two glove designs (n=10), three mask designs (n=10), or tw0 gown designs (n=10). Therefore, the main findings that were clinically relevant were issues on doffing strategies concerning safety. Most participants described avoiding contact with contaminated surfaces and incorporating gestures to minimize self-contamination and help in safe doffing.

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This article provides information on doffing strategies, including expedient and safe removal. Additionally, it looks at cognitive processes and barriers and facilitators in removing PPE relating to the equipment’s design. It identifies strategies that healthcare workers use to keep themselves safe, wherein some are different from the protocols in place. This ensures a vast understanding of the issue from the perspective of the medical staff’s protocols. It mounts on knowledge concerning the improvement of doffing performance to address preferences for practicality and safety in PPE use, which has implications on designs, hospital procedures and policies, and training approaches.

Hu, K., Fan, J., Li, X., Gou, X., Li, X., & Zhou, X. (2020). The adverse skin reactions of health care workers using personal protective equipment for COVID-19. Medicine, 99(24), 1-5. Web.

The study is about the potential effects of long-term PPE usage. It is quantitative descriptive research, and questionnaires were used to collect the desired data. The authors’ purpose to show some of the health risks that healthcare workers might be facing in the use of PPE in the fight against COVID-19. The article can be easy read and understood due to simple terms and proper structure. Additionally, it covers essential issues concerning PPE, which also enhances understanding in the area of study. The article’s problem statement is provided with a research on adverse skin reactions arising from healthcare workers’ PPE use. Sixty-five healthcare workers were selected from hospitals in Hubei Province, China, and they were asked to fill questionnaires concerning issues relating to the problem statement. The study established that wheals, skin damage, facial itching, dry skin, nasal bridge scarring, chapped skin, and rash were all effects of long-term PPE usage.

This study is relevant to handling the issue of best PPE safety practices for healthcare staff. It provides knowledge of the effects of these equipment’s adverse reactions on the healthcare workers’ skins, including reasons for occurrence and solutions to prevent such reactions. These solutions are vital in advancing knowledge on safety practices regarding PPE. For instance, the researchers propose wearing a layer of plastic gloves inside latex gloves to prevent irritant dermatitis occurrences. Such measures are critical in adding knowledge and evidence on how healthcare workers can keep themselves safe from adverse skin reactions.

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