An ever-increasing number of medical staff use mobile phones as a work aid, yet this may pose nosocomial diseases. To assess and report via a survey the handling practices and the use of phones by paediatric wards healthcare workers. 165 paediatric healthcare workers and staff filled in a questionnaire consisting of 14 questions (including categorical, ordinal and numerical data). Analysis of categorical data used non-parametric techniques such as the Chi-squared test. Although 98% of respondents (165 in total) report that their phones may be contaminated, 56% have never cleaned their devices. Of the respondents that clean their devices, 10% (17/165) had done so with alcohol swabs or disinfectant within that day or week; and an additional 12% respondents (20/165) within that month. Of concern, 52% (86/165) of the respondents use their phones in the bathroom, emphasising the unhygienic environments in which mobile phones/smartphones are constantly used. Disinfecting phones is a practice that only a minority of healthcare workers undertake appropriately. Mobile phones, present in billions globally, are therefore Trojan Horses if contaminated with microbes and potentially contributing to the spread and propagation of micro-organisms as per the rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2 virus in the world.
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2021|