HIV/AIDS knowledge and occupational risk in primary care health workers from Chile

Baltica Cabieses Valdes, Lilian Ferrer Lagunas, Luis Antonio Villarroel, Rosina Cianelli Acosta, Sarah Miner, Margarita Bernales Silva


 Objective. To explore the relationship between knowledge le­vel and occupational risk exposure to HIV/AIDS in primary care health workers. Methodology. Analytical cross-sectional study. 720 health workers from Santiago answered a survey about HIV/AIDS that included: knowledge level (appropriate, inappropriate), occupational risk (with or without risk), and control variables (age, gender, health center, education and marital status). Descriptive and association analysis were performed. Odds Ratio (OR) was estimated through simple and multiple regressions logistics. Re­sults. 58.7% of the participants reported HIV occupational risk. 63.8% of the participants from the exposed group reported an appropriate level of knowledge, versus 36.1% of the non-exposed group (Adjusted OR of 3.1, IC95%OR: 2.0-4.8, p<0.0001). Technicians and cle­aning staff reported a lower proportion of appropriate level of knowledge compared to the employees with college education (p<0.0001). Conclu­sion. The level of HIV/AID occupational risk is directly associated with the level of knowledge of the disease.

Key words: health personnel; universal precautions; HIV; occupational ex­posure; knowledge.

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