Quick Links
IJHSE Abstract

COVID-19 among Healthcare Workers: Risk of Exposure, Impacts and Biosafety Measures – A Review

1Grace Eleojo Itodo, *2Seyi Samson Enitan, 3Adesola Oyekunle Oyekale, 4Chioma Jane Agunsoye, 5Umoh Favour Asukwo, and Comfort Bosede Enitan6

1Department of Medical Microbiology, Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, Nigeria.

2Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Nigeria.

3Department of Chemical Pathology, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Oshogbo, Nigeria.

4Department of Medical Laboratory Science, Covenant University Medical Centre, Ota, Nigeria.

5Department of Histopathology, University of Uyo Teaching Hospital, Uyo, Nigeria.

6Department of Pathology, Igbinedion University Teaching Hospital, Okada, Edo State, Nigeria.

*Corresponding Author’s Contact Details: E-mail Address ✉: enitans@babcock.edu.ng; Phone no ☎: +(234) 8065483761

Accepted May 23, 2020

Healthcare workers are the frontline armies in the fight against the Coronavirus Disease –2019 (COVID-19) pandemic; and their safety should be an urgent focus in the global response to the pandemic. The virus has infected more than 4.6 million people, leaving more than 310,000 people dead in about 188 countries across the globe. Since, the fight against the pandemic started, thousands of healthcare workers have been infected, with many paying the ultimate price with their lives in a bid to provide healthcare services to COVID-19 patients. Currently, many are either in quarantine or isolation. Still, many are working in fear of the virus and under poor conditions, without adequate protection or life insurance. The potential for high exposure to COVID-19 is generally higher for healthcare workers due to increased hospitalization, long-time exposure, failure to implement effective personal protection, shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), lack of training, supervision and monitoring of infection prevention and control mechanisms. Globally, the loss of some health care workers to COVID-19 has further compounded the problem of shortage of workforce in the health sector. Preventing exposure to COVID-19 in the healthcare settings depends on the healthcare workers understanding of the infectious nature of the virus, the routes by which the virus is acquired, the techniques that are the most hazardous and the safe working practices required. This review is therefore aimed at providing relevant information on the risk of exposure, the impacts of the virus on healthcare workers and the required biosafety measures needed to keep the health care workers safe in the fight against the pandemic.

Key words: Biosafety, COVID-19, Exposure, Healthcare workers, Impacts, Risk.

Full Text PDF (750 KB)