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Original Research Articles

Occupational injuries among sewing machine operators in selected garment factories at the Export Processing Zone, Avissawella

Authors:

Eranga Hasarali Kaushalya Fernando ,

University of Brighton, GB
About Eranga Hasarali
Division of Primary Care and Public Health, Brighton and Sussex Medical School
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Pushpa Lalani Jayawardana

University of Kelaniya, LK
About Pushpa Lalani
Department of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine
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Abstract

Introduction: Occupational injuries are a major entity on the rise in the whole world. It is necessary to identify the reasons for the injuries to reduce the impact.


Objectives: To determine the incidence, types and associated factors of occupational injuries among sewing machine operators in selected garment factories at the Export Processing Zone, Avissawella, Sri Lanka


Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted between August to September 2012, among sewing machine operators in selected garment factories at the Export Processing Zone, Avissawella with one year or more experience in the present factory using a pre-tested self-administered Sinhala questionnaire. Injuries during the last three months were inquired. A sample size of 423 was recruited randomly from four selected factories. The cumulative incidence of injuries for the period was calculated. Associations were tested using chi square test. Bivariate analysis and multiple logistic regression were performed. Results were expressed as odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence interval (Cl).


Results: Response rate was almost 100% (N=422/423). Incidence of occupational injuries was 52.1 (95% CI=33.0-77.9) per 1000 workers for the three-month period with an estimate of 208.4 (95% CI=l 70.7- 250.5) per 1000 workers per year. The commonest mode of injuries was needle pricks (n=9; 40.9%). Fingers (n= 16; 72. 7%) were commonly affected resulting in cut injuries or puncture wounds (n=8; 36.4% ). Male sex (OR=2.4; 95% CI=l.5-3.3; p=0.049) was found to be a risk factor and previous experience in the garment field(OR=0.4; 95% CI=0.1-0.9; p=0.046) was a protective factor.


Conclusions & Recommendations: The annual cumulative incidence of occupational injuries was observed to be high. Therefore, relevant preventive measures need to be instituted to provide safety of workers. Focus should be on conducting prospective studies.

How to Cite: Kaushalya Fernando, E.H. and Jayawardana, P.L., 2021. Occupational injuries among sewing machine operators in selected garment factories at the Export Processing Zone, Avissawella. Journal of the College of Community Physicians of Sri Lanka, 27(4), pp.468–476. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jccpsl.v27i4.8423
Published on 30 Dec 2021.
Peer Reviewed

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