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On 26-29 March 2012, the fourth International workshop on Good Practices for Safe Injection and a Course on Cold Chain Operations and Maintenance were held in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The purpose of the Workshop was to train and update health professionals on safe injection practices, new technologies, good storage practices, and preventing risks associated with needle accidents.

The objective of the Cold Chain Course was to train personnel on good practices for managing and storing vaccines, transportation and distribution, temperature control, operating and maintaining refrigeration equipment and determining the volume and storage capacity of vaccines. The events were attended by 60 participants: immunization personnel, coordinators of the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) of the 20 health department regions, cold chain technicians, epidemiologists, physicians, representatives of the Honduran Institute of Social Safety (IHSS) and the central EPI team and a delegate of the Ministry of Health of Guatemala.

The Workshop highlighted the importance of disseminating acquired knowledge to all regions by replicating the national information in the respective immunization programmes. The event also presented Bolivia’s experience in waste manage-ment and pilot recycling programme as part of the rubella elimination campaign in 2006 (Immunization Newsletter, August 2007: Vol. XXIX, No. 4: Solid Waste Recycling Contest in Bolivia). Honduras presented their progress, challenges and per-spectives on EPI safe injection practices. Guatemala presented its experience on the management of hospital solid wastes.

Likewise, the Course on cold chain conducted group exercises, video presentations, day evaluations and a final evaluation. The results of a test after the course indicated that nearly 100% of participants improved their knowledge compared to a pre-test.

As a result of the two events, a series of issues and challenges for Honduras’ EPI were established with respect to the differ-ent topics discussed in the workshop and the course. A survey will also be conducted on safe injection practices to identify the degree of compliance and impact, including identifying potential needle-stick injuries. The EPI of Honduras, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and PAHO will coordinate the implementation of this survey.

 

Published in Global Immunization Newsletter, May 2012.

 

Last Updated on Monday, 11 June 2012 10:12

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