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OBJECTIVES: To determine the effect of the respiratory protective training program of healthcare personnel (HCP) during the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic at a private hospital in the northern part of Thailand.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted with 89 healthcare personnel (HCP) of Bangkok Hospital Phitsanulok, who required wearing a tight-fitting respirator during their duties and attended respiratory protective equipment (RPE) video-based training program regarding the general principles of respirator usage and guidelines on safely re-using RPE. A questionnaire-based assessment of participants’ 3-month retention of knowledge and perception was conducted in April 2021. A qualitative fit test (QLFT) was used in terms of practice on RPE. The proportion of correct responses in the 3-month knowledge and perception score were compared with a pre-training test and an immediate post-training test using paired t-test. The same analysis was conducted with QLFT using McNemar’s test.
RESULT: Various types of RPE were used in each test depending on the supply. The most commonly used RPE was N95 (58.4%), the majority of N95 was 3MVLFEX 9105. Compared with the pretraining test, the proportion of correct responses in the immediate post-training test increased by 11% (p < 0.001; 95% CI 1.07-2.23). Similarly, in 3-month post-training, the percentage of correct response also increased from pre-training by 10.4% (p < 0.001; 95% CI 0.08-2.28). HCP had an excellent level of perception on using RPE during COVID-19. No significant change in perception was found between pretraining and both immediate and 3-months after training (p = 0.536 and p = 0.384 respectively) The pass rate significantly raised to 96.6% for an immediate post-training test (p < 0.001) and to 98.8% after 3-month (p < 0.001).
CONCLUSION: Training has played an important role to help HCP improve their knowledge and practice regarding the usage of RPE, but has no significant effect on perception. The assessment of knowledge, perception and practice retention of RPE usage after 3-month showed the positive impacts of video-based training groups on participants’ knowledge and practice. Further evaluations are needed on the interventions that enhance HPC perceptions and attitudes on safety behavior. Pre- and in-service training programs for frontline HPC during a Coronavirus 19 disease pandemic need to be considered by Thai Ministry of Public Health.
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