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RR6 - The chronic health effects of exposure to biological agents: a systematic literature review.

Aimed to review and critically evaluate the scientific evidence for chronic health effects associated with infection by biological agents of occupational relevance and to highlight any knowledge gaps. Two systematic literature reviews were conducted for documented evidence of occupational transmission (Occupational search) for each of the listed agents and for evidence of chronic health effects in those agents with a documented occupational relevance (Chronic health effects search). A variety of databases were searched: all papers published in English between 1970 and the present day were included.. A total of 4,124 references were identified on the occupational transmission of biological agents search and more than 2,000 papers were identified in the chronic health effects search. Each organism/disease section concludes with the critical appraisal and a discussion of the evidence. Overall, comparatively little convincing evidence exists. There is some evidence that all the biological agents included in this research can be acquired in certain occupational settings Makes a number of recommendations.

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Updated 2010-03-19