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Family Experiences and Perspectives on Infection Prevention in Pediatric Long-Term Care

Wilmont, Sibyl, MSN, MPH, RN; Hessels, Amanda J., PhD, MPH, RN, CIC, CPHQ; Kelly, Ana M., PhD, RN; Larson, Elaine L., PhD, RN, FAAN

doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000013

Purpose Residents of pediatric long-term care facilities (pLTCF) are particularly vulnerable to healthcare-associated infections. The aims of this qualitative study were to (a) explore perspectives on infection prevention among families visiting children in pLTCF and (b) identify facilitators of and barriers to optimal hand hygiene.

Design and Methods Semistructured, in-depth interviews with 10 family members visiting two New York City metropolitan area facilities were analyzed to identify themes.

Findings “Everyone follows the rules” and “infections are inevitable” were primary themes. Participants reported “common sense” as a facilitator and “distraction” as a major barrier to prevention practices.

Conclusion Current education for visitors may be inadequate to improve infection prevention behaviors.

Clinical Relevance Nurse-led education strategies for infection prevention should be tested and modified for families visiting pLTCF.

The Center for Interdisciplinary Research to Prevent Infections, Columbia University School of Nursing, New York.

Correspondence: Elaine L. Larson, Columbia University School of Nursing, 617 W. 168th St., Room 330, New York, NY 10032. E-mail:

The Center for Interdisciplinary Research to Prevent Infections, Columbia University School of Nursing, New York.

The authors thank Candace Johnson, MD, for her time and contributions; facilities’ staff and leaders for their cooperation and assistance; and especially the families of children in pediatric long-term care for their candor and participation in this project.

Cite this article as: Wilmont, S., Hessels, A. J., Kelly, A. M., & Larson, E. L. (2018). Family experiences and perspectives on infection prevention in pediatric long-term care. Rehabilitation Nursing, 43(6), 307–314. doi: 10.1097/rnj.0000000000000013

© 2018 Association of Rehabilitation Nurses.
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