oa Southern African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia - Infection control in anaesthesia in regional, tertiary and central hospitals in KwaZulu-Natal. Part 3 : decontamination practices : original research
Background : Anaesthetic equipment is a potential vector for the transmission of disease. This study was undertaken to observe current infection control practices among anaesthetic nurses regarding the decontamination of anaesthetic equipment in regional, tertiary and central hospitals in KwaZulu-Natal.
Method : All hospitals that were classified as regional, tertiary and central hospitals on the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health website (15 in total) were visited. All available anaesthesia nurses were invited to participate in a structured interview.
Results : Thirty-four anaesthesia nurses were interviewed. Results revealed that decontamination of anaesthetic equipment and other infection control practices were inadequate or inappropriate in several of the hospitals. Practices varied from one healthcare facility to another, as well as within the same facility.
Conclusion : Current infection control practices among anaesthesia nurses regarding the decontamination of anaesthetic equipment in the observed hospitals are poor. In light of the high prevalence of many infectious diseases, in particular human immunodeficiency virus, hepatitis B and tuberculosis in KwaZulu-Natal, it is critical that issues relating to decontamination practices are urgently addressed.
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