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Abstract

KNOWLEDGE, AWARENESS AND COMPLIANCE AMONG DENTAL PROFESSIONALS REGARDING PERCUTANEOUS EXPOSURE INCIDENTS AS OCCUPATIONAL HAZARD IN JIZAN, SAUDI ARABIA.

Bayan Jebril Hussain Zurbtan* and Fatima Sultana

ABSTRACT

Healthcare workers, including dental practitioners and dental students, are at risk of occupational exposure to blood-borne pathogens such as hepatitis B, C and HIV. The present study set out to determine the prevalence, knowledge, management and perceptions of percutaneous injuries among staff and students at a dental training institute in Jizan, Saudi Arabia with a view to identifying policies aimed at reducing the incidence. The prevalence of percutaneous injuries experienced by dental staff and students in 2017 was determined. The levels of knowledge and their management of percutaneous injuries were determined among current dental staff and students. Amongst the current staff and student cohort, 22% reported having sustained a percutaneous injury. Of these, 43% had experienced at least one, more than half (57%) had suffered more than one injury and almost a quarter (24%) had experienced three or more PEIs. More than a half of the injuries (57.9%) were due to mishaps with the dental syringe and needles. Injuries associated with the use of the dental elevator and Blade were also common (10.5% each). High risk activities have been identified, enabling recommendations on modifications of work practice to reduce the incidence of percutaneous injuries at the ODTC. Accidents are sometimes unavoidable but attending to a percutaneous injury as soon as it occurs, treating it as a medical emergency and following through with the management protocol are of utmost importance to prevent the transmission of blood-borne diseases.

Keywords: Blood borne pathogens, Hepatitis (B, C), percutaneous injuries.


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