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Revista Española de Salud Pública

On-line version ISSN 2173-9110Print version ISSN 1135-5727


GALLARDO LOPEZ, Mª Teresa et al. Factors associated with accidents resulting from percutaneousexposure in nursing staff at a tertiary level hospital. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 1997, vol.71, n.4, pp.369-381. ISSN 2173-9110.

BACKGROUND: Accidents resulting from percutaneous exposure account for approximately one third of all accidents suffered at work by health workers in hospitals. Their importance lies in the illnesses caused by pathogens that can be transmitted in this way (hepatitis B, hepatitis C, HIV virus). The aims are to describe accidents of this type notified in a tertiary level hospital, identify factors associated with these accidents in nursing staff and build a predictive model for the individual risk of having an accident. METHODS: A descriptive study of a retrospective cohort made up of all the people who notified having suffered an accident between 1-1-93 and 30-6-96. A study of cases and controls in nursing staff during the period 1-1-95 to 30-6-96, analysed through multiple logistical regression. RESULTS: The cumulative number of cases of accidents in one year was 0.078 for male and female nurses. In 57.3% of cases, disposable or pre-loaded syringes were involved. The cumulative number of cases in one year was greater for intravenous catheterisation (8.5% per 100,000). The risk of having an accident, adjusted on account of confusing variables, was greater for female and male nurses (OR=3.22; I.C.95%=1.96-5.27), for workers in the Haemodialysis Unit (OR=35.21; I.C.95%=3.74-331.16) and for those employed on a temporary contract (OR=4.50; I.C.95%=2.24-9.04). CONCLUSIONS: Accidents resulting from percutaneous exposure at this hospital are more frequent among nursing staff and are basically caused by some type of needle used for injections. Factors associated with these accidents were identified, allowing specific prevention programmes to be targeted at those workers at greater risk. The model obtained is valid to estimate the degree of individual accident probability for the subjects studied.

Keywords : Accidents; Nursing; Risk factors; Prevention; Needles.

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