Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Infect Control. 2003 Oct;31(6):357-63.

Occupational blood and body fluids exposures in health care workers: four-year surveillance from the Northern France network.

Author information

CCLIN Paris-Nord, Institut Biomédical des Cordeliers, 15-21 rue de l'Ecole de Médecine, 75006 Paris, France.


The risk of accidental blood and body fluid (BBF) exposure is a daily concern for health care workers throughout the world, and various strategies have been introduced during the past decade to help reduce that risk. To assess the impact of multifocal reduction strategies introduced in hospitals affiliated with the Northern France network, we recently examined data from 4 years of BBF-exposure reports filed by network employees. A total of 7,649 BBF exposures were reported by health care workers to occupational medicine departments in 61 hospitals. Nurses and nursing students accounted for 4,587 (60%) of exposures, followed by nurses' aides and clinicians. Most (77.6%) of the reports were related to needlestick injury (NSI). In addition, we examined BBF exposure trends over time by analyzing data from 18 hospitals (29.5%) with data available for the time period of 1995 to 1998. These were assessed in nurses, who have the highest and most consistent reporting rate. We noted that the BBF-exposure incidence rate for all BBF exposures in nurses decreased from 10.8 to 7.7 per 100 nurses per year between 1995 and 1998 (P <.001), whereas the NSI rate decreased 8.9 per 100 nurses per year in 1995 to 6.3 in 1998 (P <.001). The percentage of NSIs that resulted from noncompliance with universal precautions also decreased significantly (P =.04). Widespread improvements in procedures and engineering controls were implemented in the Northern France network before and during the study period. Significant reductions were observed in reports of BBF exposures and NSIs, particularly in nurses. These findings are similar to those in other countries and reflect the overall improvement in the management of occupational risk of BBF in health care workers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center