To determine the effect of wearing shoe covers by medical staff and visitors on infection rates, mortality and length of stay in Intensive Care Unit

Zeeshan Ali, Aayesha Qadeer, Aftab Akhtar

ABSTRACT

Open Access

To determine the effect of wearing shoe covers by medical staff and visitors on infection rates, mortality and length of stay in Intensive Care Unit Zeeshan Ali1, Aayesha Qadeer2, Aftab Akhtar3

Objective: Intensive Care Units (ICUs) experience higher infection rates due to the severity of illness and frequent use of invasive devices. Use of personal protective equipment reduces the risk of acquiring an infection. This study has been conducted to determine the role of using shoe covers by medical staff and visitors on infection rates, mortality and length of stay in ICU.

Methods: It is a descriptive study, performed in Shifa International Hospital, Islamabad from January 2012 to July 2012. The rates of infection (by checking patients for common ICU pathogens), mortality and length of stay of patients admitted in MICU and SICU from January 2012 to March 2012 were measured. Use of shoe covers was abandoned during this period. The same parameters were measured for the patients admitted from May, 2012 to July, 2012; the period during which shoe covers were strictly used by all the staff members and visitors. The data was then analyzed and compared using chi-square test with significance value at p < 0.05.

Results:A total of 1151 patients were studied in 06 months period. Among the two groups of patients, managed with and without using shoe covers in ICU, statistically significant decrease was seen in terms of length of ICU stay(as P value is less than 0.05) in patients managed in duration of shoe covers. However, the time period in which shoe covers were used the infections with three common ICU pathogens MRSA, VRE and acinetobacter were statistically significant more than the periods in which shoe covers were not used. There was no significant difference in mortality for both groups (P value = 0.146).

Conclusion: Use of shoe covers in critical care area is not helpful in preventing infections of common ICU pathogens and length of stay in ICU patients; nor has it decreased the mortality.