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Bloodborne pathogens. What you need to know - part II.
AAOHN J 2003 Feb; 51(2):89-97
Bloodborne pathogen exposures remain a significant occupational hazard to all health care professionals. Primary preventive strategies, such as standard precautions and the availability of the hepatitis B vaccine to all health care workers, have been instrumental in decreasing the potential for life threatening exposures to HBV, HCV, and HIV. Updated work practices and engineering controls, including the use of safer medical devices, will continue to further reduce the potential risk of exposures to workers. Occupational health clinicians are in a pivotal position to foster primary preventive strategies. Ongoing education to health care professionals about the general prevalence, risk of transmission, and availability of prophylaxis and treatment is imperative. Knowledge related to the importance of taking basic precautions through the use of gloves, gowns, and masks has been proven to decrease exposure incidents. Many health professionals are experts in their specialty areas, but are unfamiliar with the latest data related to the prevention and treatment of exposures to bloodborne pathogens. Some perceive they are at little risk, and others have untoward fears. Secondary preventive intervention strategies are evolving each year through the use of new prophylactic medications for HIV and the possibility of prophylaxis for HCV. Occupational health clinicians must be updated about the latest strategies for the management of bloodborne pathogen exposures.
Bloodborne-pathogens; HIV; Infectious-diseases; Infection-control; Risk-factors; Humans; Occupational-health-nursing; Nursing; Nurses; Health-services; Exposure-limits; Exposure-levels
Issue of Publication
AAOHN Journal - American Association of Occupational Health Nurses Journal
IL; MA; TN
University of Illinois at Chicago
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division