80 per cent health staff unvaccinated for Hepatitis B in Tamil Nadu

DPH says figure is based on utilisation of vaccine procured for health care workers and not on performance report

Published: 30th March 2023 09:17 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th March 2023 09:17 AM   |  A+A-

 health staff , Hepatitis B

For reprentational purpose

By Express News Service

CHENNAI:  The Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine has instructed all deputy directors of health services to take the necessary steps to complete Hepatitis B vaccination for all healthcare workers. Pregnant women have been exempted from taking the vaccine.

In a circular, director of public health and preventive medicine Dr T S Selvavinayagam said only 20% of healthcare workers have been vaccinated to date against Hepatitis B. Selvavinayagam told TNIE that they arrived at the figure based on the utilisation of the vaccine, and not based on any performance report. The vaccines procured for the same are set to expire on March 31, 2024.

“We request healthcare workers to take vaccines as per the guidelines enclosed since they are at risk of contracting infection while working in the healthcare setting,” Selvavinayagam said. Healthcare workers include all paid and unpaid people who are at reasonable risk of exposure to infectious materials, including blood or body fluids, contaminated medical supplies and equipment, or contaminated environmental surfaces. Such workers are advised to take three doses of the Hepatitis B vaccine, the director said in the circular.

Healthcare workers were told to get vaccinated against Hepatitis B as per the minutes of the National Health Mission (NHM) meeting held on 7 September 2022, the circular said. According to doctors, getting vaccinated against Hepatitis B is necessary as they handle injections and needle sticks.

If healthcare workers do not have Hepatitis B vaccination records, they will be considered as not vaccinated. If a person receives one dose and misses subsequent doses, then the second dose should be given immediately and the third dose shall be given 2-5 months later. The third dose will be given immediately if the person misses the third dose on time, the DPH said.

Hepatitis is a serious liver disease caused by the Hepatitis B virus. It spreads through contact with infected blood or other body fluids. Hepatitis B is the leading cause of jaundice, cirrhosis or liver cancer. It also spreads through unsafe injections and transfusions, or needle stick accidents with infected blood, according to the health department.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp