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Keywords:

  • sharp injury;
  • Pakistan;
  • first level care facilities;
  • health care workers;
  • negative binomial regression;
  • blood borne pathogens;
  • universal precautions;
  • standard precautions

Abstract

Background

We assessed the frequency and predictors of sharp injuries (SIs) among health care workers (HCWs) at first level care facilities (FLCF) in rural Pakistan.

Method

HCWs working at public clinic (PC), privately owned licensed practitioners' clinic (LPC) and non-licensed practitioners' clinic(NLC) were interviewed on universal precautions (UPs) and constructs of health belief model (HBM) to assess their association with SIs through negative-binomial regression.

Results

From 365 clinics, 485 HCWs were interviewed. Overall annual rate of SIs was 192/100 HCWs/year; 78/100 HCWs among licensed prescribers, 191/100 HCWs among non-licensed prescribers, 248/100 HCWs among qualified assistants, and 321/100 HCWs among non-qualified assistants. Increasing knowledge score about bloodborne pathogens (BBPs) transmission (rate-ratio (RR): 0.93; 95%CI: 0.89–0.96), fewer years of work experience, being a non-licensed prescriber (RR: 2.02; 95%CI: 1.36–2.98) licensed (RR: 2.86; 9%CI: 1.81–4.51) or non-licensed assistant (RR: 2.78; 95%CI: 1.72–4.47) compared to a licensed prescriber, perceived barriers (RR: 1.06; 95%CI: 1.03–1.08), and compliance with UPs scores (RR: 0.93; 95%CI: 0.87–0.97) were significant predictors of SIs.

Conclusion

Improved knowledge about BBPs, compliance with UPs and reduced barriers to follow UPs could reduce SIs to HCWs. Am. J. Ind. Med. 56:479–487, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.