Psychological impact of needlestick injuries among health care workers

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Abstract:

Background: This study was designed to survey psychologic discomfort and coping processes of health care workers that suffered needlestick injuries (NSIs).

Methods: This qualitative analysis was performed with 15 health care workers who experienced NSIs. Data were collected using face-to-face interviews. The study subjects were asked the following: please describe the psychologic discomfort that you experienced after the NSI incidence. Data were evaluated by qualitative content analysis.

Results: Types of psychologic discomfort after NSI among health care workers included anxiety, anger, and feelings of guilt. Some personnel adopted active coping strategies, such as seeking first aid or reporting the incident to a monitoring system, whereas others used passive coping methods, such as avoidance of reporting the incident, vague expectancy to have no problems, and reliance on religious beliefs. Recommended support strategies to improve the prevention of NSIs were augmenting employee education and increasing recognition of techniques for avoiding NSIs.

Conclusion: Medical institutions need to provide employees with repeated education so that they are familiar with guidelines for preventing NSIs and to stimulate their alertness to the risk of injuries at any time, in any place, and to anybody.

Reference:

Qualitative content analysis of psychologic discomfort and coping process after needlestick injuries among health care workers

Jeong, J.S., Son, H.M., Jeong, I.S., Son, J.S., Shin, K., Yoonchang, S.W., Jin, H.Y., Han, S.H. and Han, S.H. (2015) Qualitative content analysis of psychologic discomfort and coping process after needlestick injuries among health care workers. American Journal of Infection Control. October 30th. [epub ahead of print].

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajic.2015.09.002

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