Difficulties in using personal protective equipment: Training experiences with the 2015 outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome in Korea

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HighlightsIll-fitting sizes were the most common obstacle observed among female healthcare personnel.Unstandardized and evolving protocols produced anxiety and confusion in healthcare personnel.The more personal protective equipment items involved, the more complex the doffing order became.This study aimed to evaluate practical barriers to personal protective equipment (PPE) use found through health care personnel (HCP) training sessions held during and after the 2015 Middle East respiratory syndrome outbreak in Korea. Difficulties observed were ill-fitting sizes, anxiety, confusion from unstandardized protocols, doubts about PPE quality and effectiveness, and complexity of using several PPE items together. Further research to generate robust evidence and repeated HCP trainings are necessary to ensure HCP and patient safety in future outbreaks.

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