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Journal Articles Infectious Diseases Now Year : 2021

Frequency of surface bacterial contamination in family physicians’ offices


Objectives The environment is perceived as a potential source of healthcare-associated infections. While this infection source has been well studied in hospital settings, little data on the risk of contamination in general medical practice is available. We aimed to assess the frequency of environmental contamination in family practice (FP), and to describe pathogens isolated, at-risk surfaces, and factors associated with this contamination. Patients and methods We conducted a cross-sectional point prevalence study over six months in 51 FP offices. In each office, six environmental samples were collected after and before consultations on high-touch surfaces (stethoscope, examination table, physician's desktop, blood pressure cuff, medical equipment tray, computer keyboard and mouse). Results A total of 580 samples were obtained. All offices were contaminated at any time with at least 2.5 colony forming units. The median rate of examination room bio-cleaning was twice a week. For all equipment and surfaces, a lower bacterial load was found before consultations when the last cleaning had occurred less than 24 hours prior to testing. Conclusion High environmental contamination was observed in FP offices. Less than one practice in five used an effective cleaning agent; family physicians’ awareness of practice hygiene is an important step for prevention.
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Dates and versions

hal-04144814 , version 1 (28-06-2023)



Pauline Huriez, Julie Lourtet-Hascoet, Jean-Ralph Zahar, Alban Le Monnier, Benoît Pilmis. Frequency of surface bacterial contamination in family physicians’ offices. Infectious Diseases Now, 2021, 51 (7), pp. 603-606. ⟨10.1016/j.idnow.2021.06.001⟩. ⟨hal-04144814⟩
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