Book Chapter

What Not to Do with PPE: A Digital Application to Raise Awareness of Proper PPE Protocol


Gibbons E, Poyade M, Rea PM & Fitzpatrick D (2021) What Not to Do with PPE: A Digital Application to Raise Awareness of Proper PPE Protocol. In: Rea PM (ed.) Biomedical Visualisation. Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology, 1334. Cham, Switzerland: Springer, pp. 55-79.

With a rise in personal protective equipment (PPE) use by all healthcare professionals (HCP) as a prime infection control strategy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic comes the potential increase in its misuse. Evidence suggests this failure to follow proper PPE protocol to prevent self-contamination and transmission can be attributed to both a lack of formal training and guidance and, now, atrophy of infrequently used skills, with many senior professionals demonstrating a lack of proficiency despite years of service. Previous research shows current written and illustrated instructional material depicting PPE guidelines are abundant but does not provide an answer on how best to target violations in protocol and better instruct those that are providing pre-hospital emergency healthcare. In this chapter, we aim to address the gap in paramedic-specific research into PPE protocol and provide an educational, digital tool to work alongside the current guidelines, potentially exploring the cognitive load theory as a design strategy. The use of 3D, interactive animations depicting errors in protocol and their potential contamination consequences in a device-based application could engage clinicians in a more effective way, thus increasing protection and decreasing transmission. This chapter describes the methodology behind the design and development of such an application for emergency care providers and provides the relevant materials needed to carry out user testing and evaluation once participants have been recruited.

Personal protective equipment; COVID-19; Health care professionals; User interface; 3D model; Animation; App development

Title of seriesAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
Number in series1334
Publication date31/12/2021
Publication date online30/09/2021
Place of publicationCham, Switzerland
ISSN of series0065-2598