Prevalence of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) among health professionals in public hospitals in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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Abstract

Abstract Background: Hepatitis B virus remains a major global health problem. Health professionals are at risk of acquiring infections via exposure to patients’ blood and body fluids. Objectives: The study was intended to assess the distribution of hepatitis B virus surface antigen (HBsAg) and associated risk factors among healthcare workers in public hospitals in Addis Ababa. Methods: Cross-sectional survey of 254 health workers in St. Paul’s and Zewditu Hospitals in Addis Ababa were taken, from November 2010 to January 2011. Socio-demographic characteristics and risk factors were collected using a questionnaire. Blood was collected, centrifuged and the serum analyzed for hepatitis B surface antigen using Instant HBsAg kit. Results: Among the 254 participants, the sero-prevalence of hepatitis B virus surface antigen was 2.4%. The majority of the study subjects, 184 (72.4%) were exposed to blood and blood products. The prevalence of needle stick and other injuries from sharp objects were 155 (61.2%) and 127 (50%), respectively. Consistent use of gloves was reported by 52.4% of the respondents. Only 9 (3.6%) of the respondents were vaccinated against hepatitis B. Healthcare workers, who did not apply universal precautions, were more likely to have been exposed to the virus (OR=7.96; 95% CI, 1.295-48.966; P= 0.025). Conclusion: Exposure to potentially infectious body fluids, needle stick and sharp injuries from sharp objects and other risk factors were high in this study. Only very small percentages of healthcare workers were vaccinated. Healthcare workers should be vaccinated and universal precautions should be emphasized for preventing the occupational risk of HBV. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 2013;27(1):72-79]

How to Cite

Desalegn, Z., & Gebre Selassie, S. (2016). Prevalence of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) among health professionals in public hospitals in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development, 27(1). Retrieved from https://ejhd.org/index.php/ejhd/article/view/314