Healthcare-associated infection (HAI) is one of the most prevalent medical errors in the U.S. (and other countries’) healthcare system. Its prevalence and persistence (as well as implications) are some of the reasons for the considerable attention the issue receives in academia. Last year, several dozens of peer-reviewed articles were published on this topic in diverse scholarly articles. The vast majority of these articles dwell upon infection control (prevalence, treatment, and so on), prevention, and care quality (with the focus on patient safety). At that, prevention is one of the areas of particular concern since it can ensure the improvement of the quality of provided care (Tchouaket Nguemeleu et al., 2020; Westercamp et al., 2020). It is also noteworthy that a large number of the articles found in various databases are devoted to HAI in different countries. Although it may seem that the articles related to the U.S. context should be reviewed, the sources linked to other countries were also considered (Moon et al., 2020; Takaya et al., 2020). It was important to learn more about existing issues and the ways professionals use to address them.
Modern researchers have a wide range of helpful tools to locate journals on various topics. Science Direct is one of the databases as well as helpful searching engines assisting in the literature search (“Moving science forward,” 2021). Springer Link is a similar instrument that helps researchers to locate sources by author, article title, topic, and journal titles, which makes the process of academic research easier (Springer link, 2021). Other helpful sources used in search of literature on NAI included PlosOne, Google Scholar, and BMC. During the literature review, the following keywords were employed: healthcare-associated infection, HAI prevalence, HAI prevention.
When reviewing the current literature on HAI (as well as any other topic), reading the abstracts is sufficient (in the vast majority of cases) to understand whether the source is appropriate for the implemented research. The mentioned databases and search engines provide access to article abstracts or even full articles. However, sometimes the review of abstracts is insufficient, so access to a full article is needed. Students have access to many databases through their facility’s library, but the list of the available resources can be quite limited, so an additional investment is needed. The situation can be even less favorable for healthcare practitioners who may have no access to such resources. A nurse may be a member of a nursing association and have access to some databases in terms of this membership.
However, there is another way to address the problem when conducting studies or implementing research. They can address their nurse leader or administration to obtain access to some of the mentioned databases (or other resources). Many healthcare facilities already offer such opportunities for their employees, but many health-related organizations still have no such options. So, advocacy can become the necessary instrument for improving the organizational aspects of a particular hospital or clinic. Nurses can advocate for the need to provide access to major databases, which will improve the quality of care.
In conclusion, it is possible to note that locating research articles has become comparatively easy due to the availability of diverse databases and search engines. A student or a nurse practitioner can access article abstracts and full articles on a variety of topics, which can facilitate their research. However, practitioners may sometimes need the support of their healthcare facility that can ensure their staff’s access to the current knowledge base that can be gained via major databases.
Moon, C. W., Jung, I. Y., Xu, Y., & Cho, K. H. (2020). Healthcare-associated infection after spinal cord injury in a tertiary rehabilitation center in South Korea: A retrospective chart audit. Spinal Cord. Web.
Moving science forward. (2021). Science Direct. Web.
Springer link. (2021). Web.
Takaya, S., Hayakawa, K., Matsunaga, N., Moriyama, Y., Katanami, Y., Tajima, T., Tanaka, C., Kimura, Y., Saito, S., Kusama, Y., Morioka, S., Fujitomo, Y., & Ohmagari, N. (2020). Surveillance systems for healthcare-associated infection in high and upper-middle income countries: A scoping review. Journal of Infection and Chemotherapy, 26(5), 429-437. Web.
Tchouaket Nguemeleu, E., Beogo, I., Sia, D., Kilpatrick, K., Séguin, C., Baillot, A., Jabbour, M., Parisien, N., Robins, S., & Boivin, S. (2020). Economic analysis of healthcare-associated infection prevention and control interventions in medical and surgical units: systematic review using a discounting approach. Journal of Hospital Infection, 106(1), 134-154. Web.
Westercamp, M., Malpiedi, P., Vasquez, A., Gomes, D., Hazim, C., Park, B. J., & Smith, R. (2020). Supporting healthcare-associated infection (HAI) surveillance in resource-limited settings: Lessons learned, 2015–2019. Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, 41(S1), s395-s396. Web.