Fears about occupational transmission of HIV may have a significant impact on the behaviour of health care workers and on infection control practices. We investigated the relationships between fear of AIDS and infection control practices in health care workers in major university teaching hospitals in Nigeria and the USA. Data from the fear of AIDS scale and on a measure of infection control practices and beliefs showed that knowledge of whether the patient was HIV-infected determined infection control practices in Calabar but not Texas. Where the patient was known to be infected there were no differences between the 2 countries. Fears of AIDS were related to infection control practices significantly more in the USA than in Nigeria where there was almost no relationship. These data may be influenced by the greater availability of disposable equipment in the USA compared with Nigeria.
- Infection control