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Knowledge and practice of standard precautions among health care providers in primary and secondary health care facilities in Imo State

Author: 
Merenu, I. A., Uwakwe, K. A., Diwe, K. C., Duru, C. B., Chineke, H. N., Emereole, C. O. and Duru C. O.
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background: Objective: This is a study to determine the knowledge and practice of Standard Precaution among Health care providers in primary and secondary health care facilities in Imo State. With the occurrence of new and re-emerging infectious diseases in the world today especially in the West African sub-region; such as Ebola Viral Disease, Lassa Fever, etcetera; It becomes imperative to examine the knowledge and practice of health care providers of preventive measures established by the World Health Organization, for the prevention of hospital acquired infections. These diseases become nosocomial infections when standard precautionary procedures are not followed. Methodology: A Cross-sectional descriptive study using semi-structured, structured and interviewer administered questionnaires; conducted among 404 health-care providers in different secondary and primary health-care facilities across the three geopolitical zones of Imo state. Result: Of the 404 respondents, 195(48.3%) were Nurses, 78(19.3%) were Doctors, 93(23%) were laboratory scientists, 38 (9.4%) were laboratory attendants. Of the respondents, 200(49.5%) got their information from textbooks/Journal. 21(5.14%) from someone, 112 (27.7%) from seminar/symposium, 31(7.6%) from Television, 17(4.2%) from Radio. Those who were knowledgeable about the use of gowns/ aprons and gloves among the Health care providers were 273 (67.7%), adequate hand-washing 318 (78.8%), wearing of surgical mask 207 (51.4%), use of goggles107 (26.6%), face shield109 (27%). On knowledge of the route of transmission of blood-borne pathogens: through improper use of sharp objects, those who knew were 269(66.7%). Total number of Health care providers that practiced Standard Precautions always were 300(74.3%). On the immunization status of health care providers: 313 (77.7%) had been immunized or had been vaccinated with BCG vaccine and hepatitis B vaccine. Conclusion: In view of the importance of standard precaution in the prevention of nosocomial infection, its knowledge and practice should be optimal in all health facilities. The teaching of Standard Precaution for health care practitioners cannot be left to the media; it must be a major part of the training curriculum of health care providers. The situation in Imo State is sub-optimal and needs to be upgraded for the safety of the healthcare practitioners and their patients.

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