López MV, Rivero E, Serra C, Campo M, Raurich M, Bonfill X. Health survey in health care professionals in Barcelona. Arch Prev Riesgos Laborales. 1998;1(2):55-62.

OBJECTIVES: To learn about the health perceptions and behaviors of health workers.

Cross sectional survey during the first trimester of 1993, directed to a representative sample of doctors and nurses in the province of Barcelona, selected randomly from the computerized registry of their respective professional Colleges.

The response rate was 83.5%. The mean age of the sample was 39 years. Seventy-one percent did not miss work in the last year due to health problems. The most prevalent pathologies at the moment of the survey were: back pain, varicose veins and migraine headaches. In the women, 92% reported having periodic gynecological examinations, 47% regularly perfomed self breast exams while 22% of those over the age of 50 had not had a mammography in their lives. In the entire sample, 56% occasionally consumed alcoholic beverages and 35.6% were active smokers. Self-estimations of health state were good for 80%, and 43% declared that they always make recommendations to improve habits of their patients, and advise against the use of tobacco, both in their professional activity as well as in social and family.

CONCLUSIONS: The majority of health professionals consider their state of health to be good, and the most prevalent pathologies in this group may be related to their work activity. Nevertheless, there is still a high prevalence of sedentary and smoking habits. It would be convenient to develop specific strategies that encourage healthy lifestyles, which can in turn have an influence on the general population.

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