Background of the study
The operating theatre is a controlled environment where surgical teams have to adhere
strictly to the infection control principles. If infection control principles are not applied
correctly or adhered to in the operating theatre, it can lead to contamination and
infection of the surgical site. Surgical site infections are the third most common source
of nosocomial infections in developing countries. In Swaziland, the incidence of surgical
site infections was exceptionally high and a major cause of post-surgical complications
as it accounts for about 12-18% of hospital acquired infections in all the regional
Surgical hand scrubbing is the process of removing as many microorganisms as
possible from the hands of the sterile surgical team members before wearing a sterile
surgical attire that consist of a sterile gown and sterile gloves. The antiseptics should
conform to the agreed standards of infection control and principles of sterile technique
to prevent contamination. Multiple factors influence the availability of the needed
resources and the implementation of policies in an operating theatre such as the setting
where the research was conducted.
Aim of the Study
The aim of this study was to explore and describe challenges faced by the surgical
teams and the hospital management regarding the surgical hand scrubbing, gowning
and gloving procedure in the operating theatre of a hospital in Swaziland.
The objectives of the study were the following:
· to explore and describe the challenges experienced by surgical teams regarding
surgical hand scrubbing, gowning and gloving procedures in the operating
· to explore and describe the challenges experienced by the hospital management
regarding surgical hand scrubbing, gowning and gloving procedures in the
operating theatre; and
· to make recommendations to address the challenges regarding surgical hand
scrubbing, gowning and gloving in the operating theatre of a hospital in
A qualitative design was used. The population for this study was the surgical teams
from all the surgical disciplines of the operating theatre and the hospital management
which includes the operating theatre nurse managers and the administrative
management of the hospital. Data were collected by means of focus group interviews,
which were conducted separately for the hospital management and the surgical teams.
Data analysis was through qualitative content analysis. Themes and subthemes that
merged from the focus groups interviews with relevant literature were used to make
recommendations to address the challenges experienced.
Results of the Study
Seven main themes were identified, which were related to the following: Management;
Supplies; Physical Facilities; Equipment; Personnel knowledge, skills and attitude;
Maintenance of infection control practices; and Process of surgical hand scrubbing,
gowning and gloving.
Recommendations were made for clinical practice, education and research in order to
improve surgical hand scrubbing, gowning and gloving procedure in the operating
Dissertation (MCur)--University of Pretoria, 2015.