Blood sample collection techniques will be made safer for healthcare professionals and patients under a new program spearheaded by the Zambian Ministry of Health in partnership with the U.S. government and BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company). The program, named Good blood draw Applications Zambia Initiative (GAZI), is designed to ensure reliable laboratory results critical for quality patient care.
Zambia is the second country to participate in this global public/private partnership, first launched in Kenya in June 2010. Under the three-year GAZI Initiative, laboratory professionals, doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers will train in blood-drawing procedures, specimen handling, and improved safety through prevention of needle-stick injuries. Drawing blood from patients’ veins using a needle and syringe is one of the most commonly performed medical procedures in hospitals and clinics. Given the prevalence of this procedure, it is vital that clinicians take the necessary steps to protect themselves and their patients from bloodborne infections resulting from accidental pricking, stabbing or scratching with equipment that has been used collect blood.
The public-private partnership recruits experts from BD with support from the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This partnership will strengthen laboratory services by improving the quality of patient specimens and reducing incidences of needle-stick injuries, thereby improving safety for both patients and health workers.
BD volunteers will hold intensive training of trainer sessions for 22 healthcare workers from 10 hospitals and a training institution. Participating institutions include University Teaching Hospital, Kamwala Clinic and Maina Soko Military Hospital in Lusaka; Arthur Davidson Hospital in Ndola; Ndola Central Hospital, Kabwe General Hospital, Kabwe Mines Hospital; Mazabuka District Hospital, Monze Mission Hospital, Livingstone General Hospital, and Ndola College of Biomedical Sciences.
Participating healthcare workers will conduct further training sessions of healthcare workers at their sites under the observation of the BD experts. Initially, approximately 420 professionals will be trained with additional training administered throughout the three-year program.
“Safe blood sample collection is a vital tool in helping hospitals and clinics diagnose illness and diseases. But healthcare workers can expose themselves – and patients – to unnecessary risks from needle-stick injuries if they do not use the correct procedures. BD’s training programme is intended to reduce that risk,” said BD Global Health Director Renuka Gadde.
BD (bd.com) is a leading global medical technology company that develops, manufactures and sells medical devices, instrument systems and reagents. The Company is dedicated to improving people's health throughout the world. BD is focused on improving drug delivery, enhancing the quality and speed of diagnosing infectious diseases and cancers, and advancing research, discovery and production of new drugs and vaccines. BD's capabilities are instrumental in combating many of the world's most pressing diseases. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in New Jersey, USA, BD employs approximately 29,000 associates in more than 50 countries throughout the world. The company serves healthcare institutions, life science researchers, clinical laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry and the general public.
The U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is the U.S. Government initiative to support partner nations around the world in responding to HIV/AIDS. It was launched in 2003, and is the largest commitment by any nation to combat a single disease internationally in history. Through PEPFAR, the U.S. Government has committed approximately US$32 billion to bilateral HIV/AIDS programmes, the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and bilateral TB programmes through Fiscal Year 2010. PEPFAR (PEPFAR.gov) is the cornerstone and largest component of the President’s Global Health Initiative. This initiative supports partner countries in improving health outcomes through strengthened health systems, with a particular focus on improving the health of women, newborns and children through programmes that address a range of health issues. For more information, please visit the website, twitter.com/uspepfar, or facebook.com/PEPFAR.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is America′s premier health promotion, prevention, and preparedness agency and a global leader in public health. CDC is at the forefront of public health efforts to prevent and control infectious and chronic diseases, injuries, workplace hazards, disabilities, and environmental health threats. The agency is globally recognised for conducting research and investigations and for its action-oriented approach to public health. CDC’s Global AIDS Program provides critical leadership in the fight against HIV/AIDS in resource-constrained countries by assisting partner governments to strengthen laboratory, epidemiology, surveillance, public health evaluation and workforce capacity-essential components for strong sustainable public health systems.