Background: Few affordable training opportunities are specifically designed for the long-term care facility infection control practitioner. There is also little evidence of the success of training in improving infection control practices. The Nebraska Infection Control Network developed a 2-day basic skills training program for Midwestern long-term care facility infection control practitioners that was later disseminated to eastern and western training sites. In this study we examined the effectiveness of the training program in terms of trainee knowledge and practice. Methods: From 1986 to 1990, a total of 17 courses conducted at the three sites were attended by a total of 266 infection control practitioners. Trainees completed a 40-item multiple choice test before and after training to evaluate their knowledge gain. Implementation of eight key infection control practices and time devoted to infection control duties were measured before training and at 3 and 12 months after training. Implementation of infection control practices was also evaluated in a second study, with infection control practitioners randomly assigned to trained and wait-control conditions. Results: Significant increases after training were found at each site for both knowledge and implementation measures. These increases were maintained at 12 months follow-up. Time devoted to infection control duties increased significantly at the midwest and western sites but not at the eastern site. In the second study, significant differences were found between the trained and the wait-control group in use of infection control practices, providing evidence for a causal relationship between training and increased use of practices. Conclusions: The training program was effective in producing improvenments in knowledge and implementation of recommended infection control practices in long-term care facilities. These improvements were consistent across three diverse geographic areas. There were some specific geographic differences.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health Policy
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Infectious Diseases