Study of blood exposure-related mental health illness among clinical nurses
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Nurses are subjected to high amount of stress in the medical setting, and work-related stress often leads to mental problems. This study aims to investigate the mental health status of nurses exposed to blood through needlestick injuries. A total of 302 nurses working in the hospital of Guangdong, China, participated in this study. Out of the 302 nurses, 140 did not experience any needlestick injuries during the previous week, whereas 162 nurses experienced needlestick injuries. The General Health Questionnaire (GHQ)-28 Standardized Questionnaire, which uses physical, anxiety, social function, and depression subscales, was used in this study. No significant difference between nurses exposed to blood and nurses not exposed to blood was found in terms of gender, age, length of employment, and civil status (P > 0.05). Results from the GHQ-28 Standardized Questionnaire showed that 75.9% (123/162) of nurses exposed to blood were suspected to suffer from mental disorders, whereas 40% (56/140) of nurses not exposed to blood were suspected to suffer from mental disorders. The mean mental health scores of nurses exposed to blood and those not exposed were 8.73 ± 7.32 and 5.69 ± 5.70, respectively. From these results, we can conclude that blood exposure from needlestick injuries leads to higher prevalence of depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms in nurses. This finding highlights the importance of providing efficient, adequate, and appropriate support services after nurses are exposed to blood from needlestick injuries.
Keywordsblood exposure needlestick injuries mental health nurses
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This work was supported by the Research and Development Fund on Science and Technology of Shenzhen (No. JCYJ2012061614414 0857).
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