Assessment of knowledge and practice of barbers & beauticians regarding hepatitis B and C

Muhammad Iqbal Khan, Arif Ahmed Zhaidi, Asma Mehar, Raheel Ahmed, Salman Zahoor, Adnan Sarfaraz, Muhammad Shoaib Safdar


Background: Barbers and beauticians can spread hepatitis B and C. The aim of this study was to assess the knowledge and practice of barbers and beauticians regarding Hepatitis B & C.

Methods: This descriptive study was conducted from 1st September 2009 to 31st December 2009, on barbers and beauticians in Bahawalpur City. Fifty barbers and beauticians were selected by convenient sampling. Data was collected by a semi-structured questionnaire for knowledge assessment and a checklist for observing the practices at barbers /beautician’s shops. The questionnaire comprised of three sections. First section formulated to get the personal data and introduction of barbers/beauticians, second to assess the knowledge and practices, and the third was composed of checklist to notify the practices through observation. Data analysed using SPSS version 16.

Results: It was noted that younger subjects were having good knowledge as compared to older. Education of even minimal level can contribute good knowledge about hepatitis B & C, as illiterates were having less knowledge. More experienced subjects showed poor knowledge as compared to less experienced. Out of 50 subjects 12(24%) were vaccinated against hepatitis B, and only 15(30%) had screening. Regarding practice only 4% were using autoclave and boiling of instruments performed by only 20%. Antiseptics were used by 64% subjects. Both barbers & beauticians were not properly cleaning instruments, the percentage was 36% and 35% respectively. Use of separate instruments for all clients was not seen except disposable blades used both by barbers and beauticians in 98% and 90% respectively.

Conclusion: The level of knowledge and healthy practice is poor in both barbers and beauticians and an urgent awareness program must be started to stop the hazardous practice in this profession.

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© 2011 Gomal Journal of Medical Sciences