Needlestick and sharp injuries (NSIs) are an important element of public health and should be closely monitored. On the other hand there are no precise Polish data on a number of the occupational NSIs. The aim of the study was to assess the failure to report injuries and then to estimate the actual number of NSIs among healthcare workers (HCWs) in Poland based on the collected data.
Analysis of injury registers on the basis of 252 hospitals in Poland. Conducting 487 surveys among doctors, nurses and paramedics. Calculation of rates of injuries per 1000 workers per year (with 95% confidence intervals (CI)). The level of statistical significance was set at p ≤ 0.05.
In the study period, 9775 NSIs were registered in the hospitals. Majority of the NSIs were recorded among nurses (72.6%, p < 0.01). The needle was the tool responsible for the greatest number of the NSIs in all professional groups (79.5%, p < 0.01). The average annual NSIs rates based on hospital registers were: 16.0/1000 doctors, 20.5/1000 nurses, 16.8/1000 paramedics. Every second NSIs was not reported (45.2%). We estimated that there are probably 13,567 NSIs every year among hospital care workers in Poland.
NSIs are a significant health problem for HCWs and should be subject to epidemiological surveillance. The purpose of the training of medical personnel should be to increase the number of injuries reported. The implementation of the epidemiological surveillance system will allow for the unification of the obtained data, which would be more comparable on the national scale as well as between different countries.