Urgent need to protect health workers from “on duty” infections

Hospital and health clinics host people with various ilness that are chronic and contagious. Doctor’s, nurses and medical students are living creatures like others, they too can fall sick and die.

Hospital and health clinics host people with various ilness that are chronic and contagious. Doctor’s, nurses and medical students are living creatures like others, they too can fall sick and die.

Many health workers are not vaccinated and protected from highly contagious diseases such as hepatitis B and hepatitis C .

Health practitioners have always adapted to taking Anti-retro viral drugs in not less than 72 hrs when they get injured with an instrument that has operated on an AIDS/HIV patient.

This saves and guarantees medical practitioners not fear handling HIV patients. So many people are infected with the immune suppressing virus and live a normal life with others. They also suffer from various illnesses besides opportunistic HIV infections.

Taking an example of the Gynaecology department where Cesarian sections, hysterectomy, kystectomy and other laparatomy interventions are necessary and always require urgent surgical operation.

Now, before you operate a patient, you need to know her or his health status so as to be alert until the end of operation.

Many hospitals in the country do not perform or carry out tests to explore the state of the patient before an operation while others like most of referral hospitals carryout these tests but also limited in case of emergency.

While doctors take anti-retro viral drugs to prevent them suffering from episodes of HIV virus attack, most of these anti-retro viral drugs have profound health side effects and in most cases weaken the health state even of a health person.

Some have negative effects on the liver and Kidney. This is why many medical practitioners fear or fail to take these drugs even after an injury with an instrument that has worked an HIV patient.

Therefore surgeons and gynecologists with mandatory surgical interventions suffer psychological and adverse effects from their duty interactions.

Today, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C are highly contagious in the Rwandan society. While their channel of infection is through blood and other body fluids, health workers are more exposed to these transmission agents than other people.

There is therefore urgent need for the government to come up and buy vaccines that can protect its health experts and the population in general.

The Hepatitis B and C vaccines are very expensive and this is why they are very rare in most of our pharmaceutical stores. In most cases, the hepatitis B and C virus leads to critical ilness of the liver such as the liver cancer and cirrhosis, which are terrible conditions to treat.

Fulminate hepatitis B and C infection often kills very fast and mostly occurs before 6 months of attack, therefore people should be encouraged to carryout clinical screening for this. 

Tuberculosis is another highly contagious disease but thank God that many people have developed immunity to its infection. Many health workers face patients who are sufferers or have suffered from Tuberculosis infection but their immunity helps them overcome the sickness.

A health body with enough nutrients normally resists bacteria that cause tuberculosis.

This is why tuberculosis is more commonly found in poor people than in economically stable societies. Important to mention here is that amongst all health workers, medical students are more exposed to episodes of tuberculosis attack than any other health worker.

This is because medical students have low economic status than other health workers. They do not have enough money to buy or get all essential products that keep their body fit to fight hospital based infections.

Many people especially health workers live with varying doses of tuberculosis but the weak fall sick and perhaps die in case of some external or internal interventions that originate from the immune suppression of blood.

Though people have complained of the level and quality of services rendered by health workers in the past, but lack of enough and advanced equipments is also part of the problem.

Other tropical diseases are also commonly found in developing countries because they lack coherent measures to protect and prevent them.

Health instruments are very expensive and they are always required for daily activities.


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