Knowledge, awareness, attitude, and practice of health-care professionals toward hepatitis B disease and vaccination in Saudi Arabia

Thamir M. Alshammari, Mohamad Aljofan, Gehad Subaie, Talib Hussain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: Health-care professionals (HCPs) are at very high risk for accidental exposure to hepatitis B virus (HBV) from infected patients; as such, this study aimed to investigate the knowledge, awareness, attitude, and practice of HCPs toward hepatitis B vaccination. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study with a pre-tested, validated questionnaire in seven major cities in Saudi Arabia from January to April 2015. The questionnaire consisted of four sections: demographics, knowledge, awareness of hepatitis B infection, and attitude of HCPs toward HBV. We analyzed the data collected from study participants using SAS® V9.2. Results: Approximately 16.5% of participants reported that they had not received the hepatitis B vaccine; however, the majority of participants believed that hepatitis B is common (73.2%) and that vaccination is an effective strategy to reduce disease incidence (75%). Availability of the vaccine was a major barrier to vaccination (48.7%), together with safety concerns surrounding the vaccine (37%). Approximately 31.2% of non-vaccinated participants believed the hepatitis B vaccine is not safe, while only 8% possessed this belief in the vaccinated group. Additionally, 36.4% of non-vaccinated participants were unsure of the effectiveness of the vaccine, compared to 24.3% in the vaccinated group. Inability to afford the vaccine was reported by 18.2% of the non-vaccinated group compared to only 4% of vaccinated participants. Conclusion: There is notable hepatitis B vaccination coverage among HCPs, but observed levels are below global standards. We believe the hurdles preventing non-vaccinated HCPs from being immunized must be addressed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2816-2823
Number of pages8
JournalHuman Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics
Volume15
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2 2019

Keywords

  • Attitude and knowledge
  • healthcare professionals
  • Hepatitis B vaccine
  • Saudi Arabia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology

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