During the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, we conducted an international survey study on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) by medical professionals (HCP) to compare adherence to published guidelines in various regions and countries and recommend guidelines for a possible second wave of pandemics. We noted that adherence varied greatly among different regions and countries. Further research is needed to improve the safety of HCPs.
During the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, we fielded an international survey study about usage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) by healthcare professionals (HCP) with the aim of comparing adherence to published guidelines across regions and countries, and recommend guidelines for the potential second wave of the pandemic.
An online survey was designed and distributed to HCPs. Based on official guidelines optimum PPE combinations were outlined for six clinical scenarios to determine adherence.
1255 surveys were collected from 80 countries. East Asia showed the highest adherence in communal hospital spaces, patient contact when COVID-19 suspected, or confirmed, carrying out Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGPs) and high-risk areas. Lowest adherence was shown by Australasia in communal hospital spaces, patient contact when COVID-19 suspected, and high-risk areas, and the Indian Subcontinent in patient contact with confirmed cases and carrying out AGPs. North America showed the lowest adherence in patient contact when COVID-19 is not suspected. At the country level, highest adherence was noted in Japan while lowest adherence was noted in Norway.
Adherence varied greatly among different regions and countries. Further research is needed to pinpoint strategies for maximizing adherence and improving the safety of HCPs.