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Indian J Med Sci. 2003 May;57(5):192-8.

HIV: awareness of management of occupational exposure in health care workers.

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Department of Medicine, AIIMS, New Delhi-110 029.



There is need for safe working environment in both government and private hospitals for the safety of health-care workers (HCWs). The present study was conducted to know the present knowledge regarding occupational exposure to HIV amongst doctors in non-governmental hospitals and clinics across Delhi.


Seventy doctors from different medical and surgical specialties in various non-government hospitals/nursing homes in Delhi were given a structured questionnaire.


Majority of them have suffered needle stick injuries. Many had also experienced splash over face, eyes. Some participants were still recapping needles most of times. 85.7% of participants were fully vaccinated for hepatitis B. 44.2% didn't know if they were responders to hepatitis B vaccine or not. Most of them didn't report the needle stick injuries. In majorities of incidents source patient was not tested for blood born infections. Many of participants were not aware of post exposure prophylactic measures to be taken if there is an occupational exposure to the blood of HIV positive patient. Awareness that drugs for postexposure prophylaxis are to be started immediately was low (36%).


The study highlights the low awareness of postexposure prophylaxis measures amongst HCWs. Many HCWs were also not aware if they were responders to hepatitis B vaccine or not. Most of the needle stick injuries were neither reported nor investigated.

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