Year : 2016  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 79-85

Occupational exposure to blood and body fluids among primary health-care workers in Kaduna State, Nigeria

1 Department of Community Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Nigeria
2 Department of Community Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Awawu Grace Nmadu
Department of Community Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2276-7096.192223

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Background: Primary Health-Care Workers (PHCWs) are at a high risk of contracting blood-borne infections due to their occupational exposure to blood and body fluids (BBFs). The aim of this study is to determine the frequency of occupational exposures and associated factors contributing to the exposure to BBFs. We also evaluated the post-exposure practices among PHCWs in Kaduna State. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out from September 26 to October 7, 2011. One hundred and seventy-two PHCWs were included in the study using a multistage sampling technique. A structured questionnaire was used to obtain the data on sociodemographic characteristics, occupational exposures to BBFs and post-exposure practices of PHCWs. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 20.0 statistical software, and descriptive, bivariate, and multiple logistic regression analyses were performed. The level of significance was set at P ≤ 0.05. Results: One hundred and seventeen (68%) PHCWs had been exposed to BBF during their professional practice, of which 53.5% and 38.4% were needlestick and blood splash exposures, respectively. Needlestick and blood splash exposures 3 months prior to the survey occurred in 27.2% and 53.0% of them, respectively. The most common causes of needlestick injuries were during disposal of needles (44.0%) and administration of injections (28.0%). The majority of the respondents (79.8%) failed to report the exposure incidents. Only 8% of the respondents preformed the desirable post-exposure action of washing the exposure site immediately with soap and water. Primary health care workers < 40 years of age had significantly lesser odds of exposure compared to those aged 40 years and above (adjusted odds ratio = 0.18, P = 0.02). Conclusion: The high rate of occupational exposure to BBFs among health-care workers reveals an urgent need to raise awareness and to provide periodic training in infection prevention.

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