NOISE POLLUTION AS A PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERN IN PEDIATRIC HOSPITALS: A CASE STUDY IN TABRIZ, IRAN
AbstractIntroduction: The increase in noise pollution is a common problem in most countries, raising public health concerns in the workplace. This paper presents the results of a noise survey in different care units of Tabriz Children’s Hospital, Iran.Materials and methods: The present cross- sectional observational research was conducted to assess 24 h noise levels in 5 pediatric care wards (neonatal, infectious, internal, NICU, and emergency) using two TES - 1358 sound level meters in the autumn of 2016. Noise level was measured as maximum level (Lmax), minimum level (Lmin), and equalizing level (Leq).Results: Mean 24 h sound level was the highest in the emergency ward (69.65 ± 1.68). The highest mean sound level in morning, afternoon, and night shifts also belonged to the emergency ward (69.53 ± 0.27, 69.30 ± 0.39, and 69.85 ± 0.43, respectively). There was no significant difference (Pvalue > 0.05) in mean sound level in the emergency ward among different work shifts. The highest and most fluctuating noise values were related to the day time, between 10:00 and 17:00 (i.e. including morning and afternoon) in all the wards, except for the emergency ward.Conclusions: The results of this study demonstrate a noise problem in Tabriz children’s hospital. The sound levels measured in all locations and at all times were higher than the recommended levels. This can have an adverse effect on the health of staff and patients, decreasing the professional performance of the personnel in various hospital units. Therefore, the sound level in different units of the hospital should be reduced to the suggested values by implementing effective noise control and prevention measures.
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