Anete Trajman and Dick Menzies

Purpose of review

In the last decade, descriptions of outbreaks of extensively drug-resistant strains of tuberculosis (TB) have increased concern about the nosocomial transmission of TB – a potentially life-threatening occupational respiratory infection. In addition, outbreaks of avian influenza caused by an H5N1 virus, severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by a coronavirus A and the recent pandemic caused by an H1N1 influenza virus have heightened concern about occupational infectious illnesses among workers in healthcare and agriculture.


Recent findings

The last decade has witnessed extensive research into the modes, patterns, determinants and extent of transmission of these illnesses. The most important findings regarding risk, determinants and preventive measures of these occupational infections and recent guidelines are reviewed in this article.


Summary

Administrative, personal and engineering measures to control respiratory infection are effective and should be implemented in healthcare facilities. The use of N95 personal respirators by healthcare workers who are caring for pulmonary TB and viral respiratory infections patients is strongly recommended. Vaccination against influenza (including H1N1) is effective and strongly recommended for healthcare workers. Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation is underused at present, despite good evidence of safety and efficacy in elimination of airborne respiratory infectious agents including TB.


Keywords

avian influenza, H1N1, infection control, influenza, nosocomial transmission, occupational health, severe acute respiratory syndrome, swine origin influenza, tuberculosis

Attachments:
Download this file (1315_Current Opinion 2010.pdf)1315_Current Opinion 2010.pdf[ ]174 kB

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A Rede Brasileira de Pesquisa em Tuberculose (REDE-TB) é uma Organização Não Governamental (ONG) de direito privado sem fins lucrativos, preocupada em auxiliar no desenvolvimento não só de novos medicamentos, novas vacinas, novos testes diagnósticos e novas estratégias de controle de TB, mas também na validação dessas inovações tecnológicas, antes de sua comercialização no país e/ou de sua implementação nos Programa de Controle de TB no País.


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