By Confidente Reporter
DEPUTY Minister of Health and Social Services, Juliet Kavetuna, and United States Ambassador to Namibia, Thomas Daughton, attended one of the ministry’s training sessions on the use of respiratory protection by healthcare workers, conducted this week.
The training was conducted by 3M and CYMOT, with support from the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), through the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Kavetuna and Daughton were given a briefing about protection against TB transmission at health facilities, through a comprehensive infection control program that includes administrative and environmental controls, and the use of personal protective equipment.
It is standard practice within the ministry, for healthcare workers providing care for TB patients to wear disposable, particulate-filtering respirators, as these respirators filter the air and dramatically decrease the chance of airborne TB being passed from a patient with to healthcare workers. However, if these respirators are used incorrectly they will not protect against the transmission of TB. The ministry is dedicated to protecting its healthcare workers and reducing the spread of TB, and is using this training opportunity as a means to better achieve this goal.
The current training will build capacity among ministry healthcare workers, regarding the optimal use of personal protective equipment, including the correct fitting and sealing of masks. TB respirator fit testing targets all cadres of employees working in the ministry’s health facilities. In the past month, over 200 healthcare workers have been trained throughout the country, on the use of respiratory protection.
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