Healthcare Associated Infections

Many patients with healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) reported feeling “like a leper”, “having the plague” or “dirty” after their diagnosis, according to a major review carried out by School of Health and Life Sciences researchers.

The team looked at 17 studies conducted in five countries, focusing on the experiences of patients with five common types of HAIs, including antibiotic-resistant superbug MRSA.

The review concluded that the consequences of HAIs reach far beyond patients’ physical health, affecting relationships and even leading some healthcare providers to distance themselves from patients who are carrying organisms that can lead to infections.

The review’s findings paved the way for what is thought to be Scotland’s first in-depth study into how patients across the country cope with HAIs and how they’re treated by healthcare professionals.

This is the first in-depth qualitative study to comprehensively explore patient perspectives on their in-hospital care and post-discharge experience for a range of HAIs. Understanding the patient experience can help healthcare professionals to interact and respond in a constructive way.

Professor Kay Currie
School of Health and Life Sciences