2 - International Conference in Emergency Medicine and Public Health-Qatar Proceedings
  • ISSN: 1999-7086
  • EISSN: 1999-7094


Pesticide poisoning is a global public health problem. With growing population and rapid industrialisation in Qatar, there has been a natural increase in pesticide usage and hence, exposure amongst the workers handling them. It is therefore vital to understand existing knowledge, attitudes and practices about handling pesticides.

100 municipality employees in Qatar who work with pesticides, were interviewed in person by trained bilingual staff using a structured questionnaire model.

The mean age of the workers was 37.4 (SD-9.9) Of the interviewed workers, 81% did not know the contents or the name of the pesticides they were handling at work. Unsafe behaviours such as preparation of pesticides at the site of its usage rather than in a specified preparation room (29.6%), non-compliance with wearing protective clothing (38.8%), handling of drinking water (22%) and food (10%) on site where pesticides are used and not washing clothes every day after work (45.9%) were observed. Workers who received training in pesticides usage were more likely to be aware of its effects on the environment (61.6%) (OR-3.9), less likely to eat or drink while handling pesticides (83.6%) (OR-4.3) and more likely to give household members appropriate instructions prior to application of pesticides (90.4%) (OR-5.0). Workers who did not wear special protective clothes at work were found to be, more than twice as likely to visit hospitals per year, than those who wore (RR-2.2).

Unsafe practices were found to be significantly common amongst the personnel using pesticides. Workers who received prior training handled pesticides in a safer way.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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