OBJECTIVE: To gain an insight into cross infection protocols being followed by dental postgraduate residents in the prevention of the spread of coronavirus.
METHODOLOGY: A cross-sectional survey-based study was conducted using questionnaires, which were distributed among dental postgraduate residents working in different public and private institutes in Karachi, through social media. Data was analysed using SPSS, version 21.0 with p-value <0.05 to determine significant differences between both sectors.
RESULTS: Ninety seven residents from both institutes responded. 60 (93.75%) and 29 (87.87%) residents from the public and private institutes respectively, reported to having the patient's temperature checked with an infrared thermometer. However, a lower compliance was noted in regard to the use of hand sanitization with a hydro alcoholic solution by both institutes with 28 (43.75%) from public and 24 (72.72%) from private institutes. 11 (17.18%) residents from public institutes responding with disposal of PPE after every patient, whereas 1 (3.03%) resident from a private institute responded with disposal after every patient. However, due to a smaller sample size, the differences were not statistically significant.
CONCLUSION: The pandemic has exposed numerous shortcomings in the dental healthcare system, regardless of the sector. Since COVID-19 is likely to become an endemic, compliance with cross infection protocols needs to be improved so as to prevent its rapid spread. In a third world country like Pakistan, where resources are already scarce, greater emphasis needs to be placed on funding the dental healthcare system to enhance basic cross infection controls.
HOW TO CITE: Rana AK, Adnan S, Abidi SYA. Infection control practices followed by postgraduate residents of public and private dental institutions of Karachi during the COVID-19 pandemic. J Pak Dent Assoc 2022;31(4):182-187.
Received: 04 January 2022, Accepted: 13 September 2022