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Advances in Preventive Medicine
Volume 2014, Article ID 296148, 5 pages
Research Article

Occupational Exposure to HIV: Perceptions and Preventive Practices of Indian Nursing Students

Community Medicine, Yenepoya Medical College, Yenepoya University, Mangalore 575018, India

Received 20 January 2014; Accepted 7 April 2014; Published 17 April 2014

Academic Editor: Magdalena Gherardi

Copyright © 2014 Siddharudha Shivalli. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Introduction. Nurses have a frontier caring role that brings them in close contact with patients' blood and body fluids. An understanding of their professional behavior is essential to assess and minimize the occupational exposure to HIV among them. Objectives. (1) To appraise the knowledge, attitudes, and preventive practices of nursing students pertaining to occupational exposure to HIV. (2) To quantify the risk and correlates of exposure to HIV among them. Methodology. Cross-sectional study was conducted in a nursing college of Varanasi, India. A semistructured and pretested pro forma consisting of questions pertaining to modes of HIV transmission, universal precaution practices, and various aspects of nursing HIV patients was utilized. Independent sample - and -tests were applied to judge the association of study variables with the knowledge and risk of HIV. Results. The study sample consisted of 87 female and 16 male nurses. Participants' knowledge of HIV transmission was satisfactory. More than 80% of them had an exposure to blood/body fluid in the last year. Exposure rates for blood/body fluid did not show a significant association with study variables. Conclusion. There were serious lacunae in implementation of the universal precautions despite satisfactory knowledge. Reinforcement of universal precautions is required.