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Title: New Graduate Nurses and Infection Control: Knowledge Versus Practice
Authors: Friedewald, Mark ;Elwin, Carolyn 
Issue Date: 2003
Source: Volume 8, Issue 1, pp. 21-27
Journal title: Healthcare Infection
Abstract: Nurses are directly involved in the delivery of patient care and have a responsibility to minimise cross infection between patients. The NSW Nurses' Registration Act contains a clause that directs nurses to comply with the infection control (IC) policies of facilities at which they are employed. The ability to comply with policies, which often vary between facilities, is dependent upon a sound knowledge of IC principles and disease transmission that is grounded in practice application. The curricula of undergraduate nursing programmes have a responsibility to ensure that programme participants are provided with this combination of knowledge and practice. Approximately 80 new graduate nurses, from up to 17 different universities and with a broad range of clinical practice backgrounds, commence employment at Central Coast Health (CCH) NSW, Australia on an annual basis. CCH comprises four campuses with a total number of beds in excess of 700 and has a teaching affiliation with the University of Newcastle. A number of sub-optimal IC practices by new graduate nurses had been reported across time and cohorts from a variety of clinical sources. Educational strategies were utilised during the orientation of new graduate nurses over a study period of 3 years in an attempt to improve IC practice. Results suggest that while knowledge levels remained relatively unchanged following educational interventions, the actual practice of IC principles in the clinical setting was improved as a result of the use of vignettes which comprised a significant component of the interventions.
DOI: 10.1071/HI03021
ISSN: 0195-6701
Publicaton type: Journal Article
Keywords: Nursing
Professional Development
Infection Control
Appears in Collections:Nursing

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