Seroprevalence of Hepatitis B Among Municipal Waste Collectors in Penang Island, Malaysia and Their Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Towards the Prevention of Hepatitis B

  •  Siti Fatimah Kader Maideen    
  •  Fairuz Fadzilah Rahim    
  •  Abdul Rashid    
  •  Surajudeen Abdulrahman    


While there are many risks that increase an individuals’ exposure to infectious diseases such as Hepatitis B, occupational exposure increases one’s risk to acquire such infections.  The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of Hepatitis B among municipal solid waste collectors and their knowledge, attitude and practice towards the prevention of Hepatitis B. An analytical cross-sectional study was carried out among solid waste collectors in Penang Island from November 2017 to Mei 2018.  The inclusion criteria of this study were solid waste collectors who have been working for at least 6 months and able to understand either Malay or English language. Those who did not turn up during the data collection period and who were unable to give their blood sample were excluded from the study. Participants’ blood were tested for Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and Hepatitis B surface antibody (HBsAb) using Elisa. The waste collectors were then interviewed using a structured questionnaire. Ethical approval was obtained from the Institutional Research Ethics Committee, PMC RC-14. A total of 184 out of 221 eligible waste handlers participated in the study, giving a response rate of 83.3%. The prevalence of Hepatitis B in this study was 1.6%.  Significant correlation was observed between attitude and practice scores (r=0.203, p=0.006). The prevalence of Hepatitis B among municipal waste collectors was low in this study. Most had poor knowledge in regards to Hepatitis B. Empowering workers by providing them adequate information is essential to reduce the risk of contracting the disease.

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