Author(s): Sharma R, Rasania S, Verma A, Singh S
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Because of the environment in which they work, many health care workers are at an increased risk of accidental needle stick injuries (NSI). OBJECTIVE: To study prevalence and response to needle stick injuries among health care workers. MATERIALS AND METHODS: STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: A tertiary care hospital in Delhi. PARTICIPANTS: 322 resident doctors, interns, nursing staff, nursing students, and technicians. STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: Proportions and Chi-square test. RESULTS: A large percentage (79.5\%) of HCWs reported having had one or more NSIs in their career. The average number of NSIs ever was found to be 3.85 per HCW (range 0-20). 72 (22.4\%) reported having received a NSI within the last month. More than half (50.4\%) ascribed fatigue as a cause in their injury. Most of the injuries (34.0\%) occurred during recapping. In response to their most recent NSI, 60.9\% washed the site of injury with water and soap while 38 (14.8\%) did nothing. Only 20 (7.8\%) of the HCWs took post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) against HIV/AIDS after their injury. CONCLUSIONS: The occurrence of NSI was found to be quite common. Avoidable practices like recapping of needles were contributing to the injuries. Prevention of NSI is an integral part of prevention programs in the work place, and training of HCWs regarding safety practices indispensably needs to be an ongoing activity at a hospital.
This article was published in Indian J Community Med
and referenced in Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals