An assessment of the need for an infection control course for medical students

Michael Edward Cunningham, University of Pennsylvania


Hospital-acquired or nosocomial infections are one of today's major medical problems. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) as many as 6 percent of all people admitted to hospitals end up with infections they would not otherwise get. The increasing rate of inflation of hospital costs are a serious burden to the patient and hospital when extra charges and prolongation of stay are attributable to nosocomial infections. With the DRG's the hospitals are now having to absorb the costs that will occur with patients who have nosocomial infections. Therefore an effective infection control program can improve the understanding and prevention of nosocomial infections. With the physicians better educated about the prevention of nosocomial infections a hospital can cut its costs. Since physicians are usually placed in charge of an infection control program an understanding of the modern concepts of infection control would be beneficial. From a pilot study, it was shown that an educational course did increase the medical students cognitive knowledge of infection control principles. Therefore this developmental descriptive study is intended to show that a formal course on infection control principles will increase the medical student's knowledge of infection control. The findings from this study showed that infection control education is becoming an important component in today's medical school curriculum. In addition, the results significantly (p $<$ 0.05) showed the effectiveness of teaching infection control principles to medical students. In summary, this study showed that there is a need for educating medical students in the modern concepts of infection control.

Subject Area

Health education

Recommended Citation

Cunningham, Michael Edward, "An assessment of the need for an infection control course for medical students" (1995). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI9543066.