Visitor behavior during hospital inpatient visitation

BAYHAN G. İ., Can R., Elçi S., Kamiş F., Saritaş K., Yetim S., ...More

GERMS, vol.12, no.4, pp.554-560, 2022 (ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Letter
  • Volume: 12 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.18683/germs.2022.1360
  • Journal Name: GERMS
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE
  • Page Numbers: pp.554-560
  • Keywords: caregiver, hand hygiene, healthcare workers, Healthcare-associated infections, respiratory etiquette, visitor
  • Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt University Affiliated: Yes


Introduction The common target audience of the current guidelines for the prevention of healthcare-associated infections is represented by healthcare workers. Behavioral protocols for visitors and caregivers that aim to prevent healthcare-associated infections are still not available. The aim of this study was to determine the behavior of the visitors and to determine possible behavior that would contribute to the transmission of pathogenic microorganisms, in order to provide suggestions for visitors in the post-pandemic period. Methods A survey about visitor behavior was administered to 621 visitors. The survey consisted of questions regarding the demographic features and the behavior of the patient visitors. Results Seventy-seven visitors (12.4%) had at least one infection-related symptoms. Overall, 426 (68.6%) visitors stated that they would cancel their visit if they had any infection-related symptoms. The location of the hand washbasin to wash or sanitize the hands at the patient’s unit was not known by 142 (22.9%) visitors. The number of visitors performing all hand hygiene steps was 351 (56.5%). Compliance with hand hygiene was not affected by age, gender, living in the same house as the visited patient, or visiting an adult or pediatric patient. Conclusions The visitors should be queried about symptoms of infectious disease at the entrance of the hospital. The knowledge level of the visitors about hand hygiene is not sufficient. Clear recommendations about when and how often visitors should practice hand hygiene and providing information at the entrance of the hospital will improve the hand hygiene compliance of the visitors.