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Sci-Afric Journal of Scientific Issues, Research and Essays (SJSIRS)

Sci-Afric Journal of Scientific Issues, Research and Essays Vol.2(4) Pp. 141-146 April 2014 Copyright 2014 Sci-Afric Publishers.


Perceived Risk of HIV Infection Among Midwives Working in the Labour Wards.

1CK.Yekple, 2CK. Affram, and 2ES. Donkor*

1. 37, Military Hospital, Ghana.
2. School of Nursing, College of Health Sciences, University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana.


*Corresponding Author’s E-mail: tinadonkor@yahoo.co.uk     

Accepted March 26th, 2014


Health workers are at risk of being infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and other blood-borne pathogens because of their exposure to blood and body fluids. The purpose of the study was to investigate into the perception of risk factors of HIV infection through exposure to blood and body fluids and other health hazards among midwives working in labour wards. Using in-depth interviews, qualitative data were collected from eight midwife participants from the labour wards of a district hospital and a Polyclinic in Accra. Enquiries were made about modes of exposure to body fluids, participants’ perceptions of risk of HIV infection after exposure, and precautions available for preventive measures. The findings indicate that the midwives perceived themselves to be at risk of acquiring HIV and other blood borne diseases. There was lack of knowledge on procedures to report any incident that jeopardised the life of the participants as a result of an exposure. The participants rarely follow the directions of universal precautions of infection prevention because of lack of resources. Some midwives were considering leaving the work while others had left the profession because of the occupational hazards and the risk of being infected with HIV. Recommendations are made for provision of resources for infection prevention in the labour wards by management of hospitals.

Amniotic fluid, HIV infection, labour wards, midwives, occupational risk, universal precautions.



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