BACKGROUND: Skin disorders accounted for one third of all recognised occupational diseases in Denmark in 2010. Wet work is a risk factor for the development of occupational hand eczema. The consequences of occupational hand eczema include sick leave, loss of job and impaired quality of life. OBJECTIVES: The aim of the present study was to investigate exposures related to cleaning and the effect of an evidence-based educational intervention on the prevention of hand eczema among hospital cleaners. PATIENTS/MATERIALS/METHODS: The intervention consisted of a 1 hr course in hand protective behaviour. All full-time cleaners working at Bispebjerg Hospital in January 2013 were invited to participate. The outcome measures were self-reported skin behaviour, exposures, knowledge of skin protection and hand eczema severity index (HECSI). RESULTS: One hundred and five cleaners were invited to participate, of these 86 (82%) were included. At follow-up after 3 months there was a shift towards fewer daily hand washings and hand disinfections (p < 0.001 and p = 0.001 respectively). The number of correct answers to the knowledge questions rose from 6.3 to 7.3 (p = 0.006). The mean HECSI score decreased from 2.8 to 1.8 at follow-up (p = 0.002). CONCLUSIONS: Data indicates a positive effect of a low-cost on-site educational intervention for hospital cleaners.
Contact Dermatitis, 2015, Vol 72, Issue 1, p. 47-54
Adult; Denmark; Dermatitis, Contact; Dermatitis, Occupational; Female; Hand Dermatoses; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Humans; Inservice Training; Male; Middle Aged; Personnel, Hospital; Primary Prevention; Prospective Studies; Surveys and Questionnaires; Journal Article