ANA Supports International Initiative to Prevent HIV and TB among Health Care Workers

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The American Nurses Association (ANA) President Karen Daley, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN, delivered a message via video on ANA’s efforts to prevent health care workers’ occupational exposure to the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and tuberculosis (TB), and to provide treatment and support to those who are exposed, at the launch of an international workplace safety initiative November 19, 2010.

Daley noted ANA’s long history of work in preventing transmission of communicable diseases in health care settings and its recent national event marking the 10th anniversary of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act in her address, which was viewed as part of an event sponsored by three international health and labor organizations in Geneva, Switzerland.

The World Health Organization (WHO), Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and the International Labour Organization (ILO) announced that they have joined to address the challenges faced by health care workers worldwide who are dealing with the growing dual epidemic of HIV and TB among patients. The organizations have developed policy guidelines to improve health care workers’ access to HIV and TB prevention, treatment, care, and support services, based on research and current practices in 21 countries.  The organizations say that the guidelines provide “the first specific and coherent focus on improving health workers’ access” to HIV and TB prevention and post-exposure care.