The article “Impact of a team and leaders-directed strategy to improve nurses’ adherence to hand hygiene guidelines” depicts the results of a quantitative study concerning the use of a hand hygiene strategy. Huis et al. (2013) carry out a cluster-randomized trial that focuses on the effectiveness of a team and leaders-directed strategy. It is possible to note that the article in question is relevant and can be used in other studies associated with hand hygiene.
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The Analysis of Title, Abstract
The title of the article is brief and detailed at the same time. It reflects the subject matter of the research and enables the reader to grasp the major point of the study. The abstract briefly highlights the major points of the article and provides data on the participants, methodology, findings, and conclusions, which makes it an effective abstract. The reader can easily evaluate the relevance of the article to particular research.
The Analysis of Introduction, Statement of The Problem, Research Questions, Theoretical Framework, Literature Review
The introduction is quite effective as it provides the necessary background for the study. Huis et al. (2013) provide some data on the relevance of the research and note that insufficient hand hygiene at healthcare facilities is associated with a high rate of infections acquired by patients. Schweon, Edmonds, Kirk, Rowland, and Acosta (2013) also reveal the correlation between hand hygiene and the rate of infections.
Sickbert-Bennett et al. (2016) claim that hand hygiene compliance rates are still quite low although various strategies to address the issue have been employed. The problem is clearly stated in the article’s introduction, and Huis et al. (2013) manage to justify its practical significance. At that, the authors fail to provide a set of research questions, which could help the reader to evaluate the effectiveness of the methodology used.
Nonetheless, Huis et al. (2013) provide their hypothesis. Thus, the researchers do not put any questions but describe the expected outcomes of the research. The purpose of the study is to examine the impact of social influence on the effectiveness of a hand hygiene strategy. The major weaknesses of the article are the absence of a clearly outlined literature review and theoretical framework. The authors refer to other studies throughout the introduction, as well as the entire paper, but a literature review section could make the article more substantial. The sources used are mainly recent (published in the 2000-2010s).
However, it could be beneficial to use sources published between 2007 and 2012. This would make the article more relevant and up-to-date. It is also unclear which theoretical framework is guiding the study. As for defining key terms, the authors provide the necessary definitions, but it could be more effective to provide these definitions so that the reader could easily find them. Instead, the definitions are simply given within the introduction (without any hints such as the use of paragraphs or highlighting).
The Analysis of Methods, Analysis, Results
Huis et al. (2013) implement an original study involving the use of a cluster-randomized trial that is associated with the randomization of groups rather than individuals. The methodology involves the use of observation as the primary data collection tool. The research design is consistent with the purpose of the research as the researchers focused on compliance with hand hygiene practices. It is noteworthy that other studies are also associated with the use of observation as a data collection method (Stewardson et al., 2016; Randle, Firth, & Vaughan, 2012).
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The baseline data were obtained before the implementation of the strategy. The strategies were implemented for six months. Other measurements were carried out right after the delivery of the strategy and six months later (Huis et al., 2013). One of the weaknesses of the sections in question is the absence of a clear outline of variables both dependent and independent. The dependent variable is the compliance with hand hygiene regulations and practices (more specifically, the quantity of realized opportunities for appropriate hand hygiene). Nonetheless, this is not clearly stated.
As for the participants of the research, they are described in detail. The participants were nurses from different departments. As has been mentioned above, the nursing staff of these departments was randomized. The size of the sample is sufficient (2733) and representative of the target population (nursing staff). As for the ethical considerations, it is necessary to note that the authors obtained permission from the ethical committee to implement the study under certain conditions.
The nurses did not know they were observed otherwise the Hawthorne effect could undermine the validity of data collected. As for the nurses’ participation in the training on hand hygiene, it was obligatory, and all nursing professionals participated. The participants were randomly assigned to the control or experiment groups. The participants were not exposed to any harm as all the data were coded and departments rather than individuals were analyzed. It is necessary to note that the validity and reliability of the sampling and data collection strategies were ensured. For instance, interrater reliability was ensured through parallel monitoring sessions (Huis et al., 2013).
As for data analysis and statistical tools, the authors provide a detailed description of the strategies employed. Descriptive statistics were utilized in this study, which is consistent with the study’s purpose as the analysis of the frequency of certain actions could show the professionals’ compliance with certain regulations, practices, and standards. The researchers used certain software to facilitate the data analysis process.
The Analysis of Results, Discussion, Limitations, and Conclusion
It is necessary to note that the results of the study are provided in an effective form. Some graphs and descriptions enable the reader to follow easily. The results are consistent with the researchers’ hypothesis. It turned out that the social component has a significant effect on the efficacy of training strategies aimed at improving hand hygiene. Thus, team and leaders-directed strategies have proved to be more effective than conventional training methods.
These findings are also consistent with other studies. For instance, Cumbler et al. (2013) emphasize the importance of culture in improving hand hygiene. One of the weaknesses of the sections in question is the lack of attention to the study’s limitations. For example, the authors only mention that they did not estimate the infection rate, which could be regarded as a limitation. As for the implications, the authors note that their research can be used by practitioners who will acknowledge the benefits of the social component. They also mention that the methodology of their study can also be used in other studies. At that, the authors fail to mention any areas for further research, which can make the study rather misplaced among other researches.
I would use this article in my research although it has some weaknesses. The research provides sufficient details concerning the methodology used. The researchers also provide valuable insights into an important area of the nursing practice. It is possible to use the article as one of the supporting resources when advocating the use of the social component in training.
Cumbler, E., Castillo, L., Satorie, L., Ford, D., Hagman, J., Hodge, T.,…Wald, H. (2013). Culture change in infection control. Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 28(4), 304-311.
Huis, A., Schoonhoven, L., Grol, R., Donders, R., Hulscher, M., & Van Achterberg, T. (2013). Impact of a team and leaders-directed strategy to improve nurses’ adherence to hand hygiene guidelines: A cluster randomised trial. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 50(4), 464-474.
Randle, J., Firth, J., & Vaughan, N. (2012). An observational study of hand hygiene compliance in paediatric wards. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 22(17-18), 2586-2592.
Schweon, S., Edmonds, S., Kirk, J., Rowland, D., & Acosta, C. (2013). Effectiveness of a comprehensive hand hygiene program for reduction of infection rates in a long-term care facility. American Journal of Infection Control, 41(1), 39-44.
Sickbert-Bennett, E., DiBiase, L., Willis, T., Wolak, E., Weber, D., & Rutala, W. (2016). Reduction of healthcare-associated infections by exceeding high compliance with hand hygiene practices. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 22(9), 1628-1630.
Stewardson, A., Sax, H., Gayet-Ageron, A., Touveneau, S., Longtin, Y., Zingg, W., & Pittet, D. (2016). Enhanced performance feedback and patient participation to improve hand hygiene compliance of health-care workers in the setting of established multimodal promotion: A single-centre, cluster randomised controlled trial. The Lancet Infectious Diseases. Web.