INTRODUCTION: The purpose of this study was to assess the understanding and views of hospital laboratory workers related to risk factors in their work environment.
METHODS: This quantitative analysis included 234 laboratory employees in a university hospital. The data were obtained using a survey consisting of 19 questions: 8 items solicited demographic characteristics of the respondents, 3 questions determined their observations about the work environment, and 8 questions asked about occupational risk perception. Risk perception was evaluated using a scale designed specifically for laboratory employees. Frequency, percentages, and averages were used to present descriptive data. A t-test and analysis of variance were used to analyze occupational risk perception according to participant characteristics and responses.
RESULTS: A total of 162 women and 72 men (mean age: 40-49 years) participated in the study. The most common health problem observed was lower extremity pain. The occupational risk perception level was found to be above average (3.13±0.68). There was a statistically significant difference between the occupational risk perception score and the length of employment in the unit (p<0.05); however, no statistical significance was found between occupational risk perception and other variables (gender, age, field of work, education, or length of overall professional experience).
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION: The occupational risk perception score of laboratory workers with 11-16 years of experience was higher than that of more recent employees. Training is known to be effective and would appear to be a valuable investment in the development of risk perception among laboratory employees to ensure a safe and effective environment.