All Alone: A Qualitative Study of Home Health Aides’ Experiences during the COVID-19 Pandemic in New York

Source avec lien : American Journal of Infection Control, (Prépublication), . 10.1016/j.ajic.2021.08.004

Malgré leur rôle intégral, les aides de santé à domicile (ASD) sont largement méconnues comme étant essentielles à la mise en œuvre de pratiques efficaces de prévention et de contrôle des infections dans le cadre des soins de santé à domicile. Nous avons cherché à comprendre les besoins et les défis en matière de prévention et de contrôle des infections associés à la prise en charge des patients pendant la pandémie du point de vue des HHA.

Background Despite their integral role, Home Health Aides (HHAs) are largely unrecognized as essential to implementing effective infection prevention and control practices in the home healthcare setting. We sought to understand the infection prevention and control needs and challenges associated with caring for patients during the pandemic from the perspective of HHAs. Methods From June to August 2020, data were collected from HHAs in the New York metropolitan area using semi-structured qualitative interviews by telephone; 12 HHAs were interviewed in Spanish. Audio-recorded interviews were transcribed, translated and analyzed using conventional content analysis. Results In total, 25 HHAs employed by 4 unique home care agencies participated. HHAs had a mean age of 49.8 (±9.1), 24 (97%) female, 11 (44%) Black, 12 (48%) Hispanic. Three major themes related to the experience of HHA’s working during the COVID-19 pandemic emerged: (a) all alone, (b) limited access to information and resources, and (c) dilemmas related to enhanced COVID-19 precautions. Hispanic HHAs with limited English proficiency faced additional difficulties related to communication. Conclusion We found that HHA communication with nursing staff, plays a key role in infection control efforts in home care. Efforts to manage COVID-19 in home care should include improving communication between HHAs and nursing staff.

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