Sonia Lippke, Franziska M. Keller, Christina Derksen, Lukas Kötting, Alina Dahmen
Background: During the COVID-19 pandemic, hygiene behaviors such as keeping distance, avoid-ing masses, wearing face masks and adhering to hand hygiene recommendations became impera-tive. The current study aims to determine factors interrelating with hygiene behaviors. Methods: 4,049 individuals (1,305 male, 2,709 female, aged 18-80 years) were recruited from rehabilitation clinics or freely on the internet and surveyed via online questionnaire between May 2020 and August 2021. Socio-demographics, hygiene behaviors, emotions (fear), life-satisfaction, risk factors and disability as well as communication were assessed. Results: Prevalence for hygiene behaviors was: keeping the distance 84.9%, avoiding mass gatherings 84.6%, wearing face masks 96.5% and hand hygiene 80.7%. Hygiene behaviors were significantly related to fear with linear and quad-ratic associations. Conclusion: Individuals with disabilities, risk factors and psychological symp-toms are more compliant. Especially hand hygiene should be targeted to achieve higher compli-ance rates. A medium level of fear is more functional than too elevated fear. Behavioral interven-tions and targeted communication aiming at improving different behaviors in orchestration can help individuals to remain healthy and maintain a high life-satisfaction. Thereby, communication in the healthcare setting is imperative and all involved individuals should become more aware of this to ensure high hygiene standards and patient safety.
Keywords: COVID-19; disability; risk factors; communication; medical rehabilitation; psychosomatic patients; general public; infection; physical health; psychological health