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Bull World Health Organ. 1998;76(1):99-100.

Unsafe injections.

Author information

  • 1Global Programme for Vaccines and Immunization, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.

Abstract

In many developing countries use of unsterilized or improperly sterilized needles and syringes is common and causes millions of cases of viral hepatitis B and C as well as contributing to the spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other bloodborne pathogens. To combat this problem, WHO has stimulated the development of the "auto-destruct" syringe and encourages all donors, international agencies, and health departments to include a supply of such syringes with all vaccines supplied for emergency purposes. In addition, health providers and the public need to be educated about the risk of inappropriate and unsterile injections.

PIP:

More than half of the injections administered in many developing countries are unsterile, resulting in millions of cases of viral hepatitis B and C and increased transmission of HIV infection. Since both hepatitis B and C and HIV viruses have a long incubation period and take a long time to kill, the association with an injection is seldom made. To combat this problem, the World Health Organization (WHO) has distributed millions of sterilizable needles and syringes and steam sterilizers around the world. WHO's Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) has stimulated the development of the one-time "autodestruct" syringe and seeks to make this the standard injection device in all countries. The EPI has called upon all donors, international agencies, and health departments to bundle a supply of autodestruct syringes and boxes for their disposal after use with all vaccines supplied for emergency purposes. Education to change attitudes of the public and health providers remains a vital component of the campaign to reduce the risk of inappropriate and unsterile injections.

PMID:
9615502
PMCID:
PMC2305624
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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