Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
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O'Rourke, N,Bennett, M,Porter, J,Gallagher, DJ,Shorten, G
Irish Journal of Medical Science
Universal precautions - do Irish anaesthetists comply?
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Background Anaesthetists are at high risk from blood-borne pathogens. Universal Precautions (UP) include the routine use of appropriate barrier precautions and techniques to reduce the likelihood of exposure to blood, body fluids and tissues that may contain pathogens. The compliance of Irish anaesthetists with these precautions has not been studied.Aim To study the attitudes of Irish anaesthetists to Universal Precautions.Method A postal questionnaire was sent to 210 anaesthetists currently practising in Ireland. The questionnaire was based on a model used in Australia acid New Zealand.Results There was a 50% response rate to the survey. Only 15% of respondents had taken a risk history from a patient in the preceding four weeks. Resheathing of needles was commonplace. The effectiveness of hepatitis B immunisation was rarely checked and only 66% of respondents believe implementation of Universal Precautions to be practical.Conclusion Irish anaesthetists comply poorly with Universal Precautions.
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