Hepatitis B Vaccination Status among Nursing Students in Karachi, Pakistan
Background: Hepatitis B infection is a fatal occupational hazard for health care professionals especially for student nurses. They can be easily protected from hepatitis B infection by their HBV vaccination.
Objective: To determine the frequency of HBV Vaccination among student nurses in Karachi Pakistan.
Material and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in ten nursing institutes (five public and five private) among 529 nursing students.
Results: Out of 529 nursing students, only 270(50.6%) were vaccinated. Among 270 respondents, 58.8% were completely vaccinated and68% were vaccinated before clinical exposure. The most common reasons for not being vaccinated included lack of knowledge about HBV vaccine (31.88%), unavailability of free of cost vaccine (22 %), have no time for vaccination (11.96%), afraid of vaccine side effects/complications (10.14%), afraid of injection (9.42%), have prior immunity (5.43%), not effective vaccine (5.07%) and high vaccine cost (3.99%).
Conclusion: There is alarmingly low vaccination coverage of hepatitis B among nursing students of Karachi, leading to a great professional risk of hepatitis B infection. Consequently, policy should be implemented for making hepatitis B vaccination mandatory for admission in nursing institutes to prevent nursing students from acquiring this fatal disease.
Keywords: Hepatitis B vaccine; Hepatitis B virus; Nursing students; Vaccination; Pakistan.
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