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Heininger, Susanne Katharina; Baumgartner, Maria; Zehner, Fabian; Burgkart, Rainer; Söllner, Nina; Berberat, Pascal O.; Gartmeier, Martin:

Measuring hygiene competence
The picture-based situational judgement test HygiKo

In: BMC Medical Education (2021) , 410

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3a. Beiträge in begutachteten Zeitschriften; Aufsatz (keine besondere Kategorie)

Background: With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic at the beginning of 2020, the crucial role of hygiene in healthcare settings has once again become very clear. For diagnostic and for didactic purposes, standardized and reliable tests suitable to assess the competencies involved in "working hygienically" are required. However, existing tests usually use self-report questionnaires, which are suboptimal for this purpose. In the present study, we introduce the newly developed, competence-oriented HygiKo test instrument focusing health-care professionals' hygiene competence and report empirical evidence regarding its psychometric properties. Methods: HygiKo is a Situational Judgement Test (SJT) to assess hygiene competence. The HygiKo-test consists of twenty pictures (items), each item presents only one unambiguous hygiene lapse. For each item, test respondents are asked (1) whether they recognize a problem in the picture with respect to hygiene guidelines and, (2) if yes, to describe the problem in a short verbal response. Our sample comprised n=149 health care professionals (79.1% female; age: M=26.7 years, SD=7.3 years) working as clinicians or nurses. The written responses were rated by two independent raters with high agreement ()0.80), indicating high reliability of the measurement. We used Item Response Theory (IRT) for further data analysis. Results: We report IRT analyses that show that the HygiKo-test is suitable to assess hygiene competence and that it allows to distinguish between persons demonstrating different levels of ability for seventeen of the twenty items), especially for the range of low to medium person abilities. Hence, the HygiKo-SJT is suitable to get a reliable and competence-oriented measure for hygiene-competence. Conclusions: In its present form, the HygiKo-test can be used to assess the hygiene competence of medical students, medical doctors, nurses and trainee nurses in cross-sectional measurements. In order to broaden the difficulty spectrum of the current test, additional test items with higher difficulty should be developed. The Situational Judgement Test designed to assess hygiene competence can be helpful in testing and teaching the ability of working hygienically. Further research for validity is needed. (DIPF/Orig.)

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