International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene

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Jan 7th: Beat the Bugs: a community education course on hygiene, self-care and antibiotics – a pilot study

The e-bug team have carried out a pilot study of Beat the Bugs,  a learning programme designed to give communities knowledge and confidence to manage their own infection and change behaviour around hygiene, self-care and antibiotics.

Pilot courses with 9–12 adults with learning difficulties and young parents were delivered by community leaders and observed by researchers. Participants completed before and after knowledge questionnaires. Two participant focus groups and two course leader interviews explored views on the course and retention of knowledge. Completed questionnaires and qualitative results showed an improvement in participant knowledge in each session; microbes and antibiotics sessions showed the greatest knowledge improvement. Self-care showed the greatest knowledge retention and participants reported behaviour change including an increase in appropriate hand-washing.

The UK Five Year Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy outlines seven key areas for future action including improving public knowledge and understanding of antimicrobial resistance through education. e-Bug supports this key area for action by educating children and young people and is endorsed by the National Institute for Health Care Excellence.

The resource can be found at:  http://www.e-bug.eu/beat-the-bugs/

Eley CV, Young VL, Hayes CV, Parkinson G, Tucker K, Gobat N, McNulty CA. A mixed methods pilot of Beat the Bugs: a community education course on hygiene, self-care and antibiotics. Journal of Infection Prevention. 2018 Nov;19(6):278-86.