Predictors of Observance of Preventive Behaviors Toward Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever by Butchers in Qom City in Central Iran

Background: Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) is a viral zoonosis. Ranchers, butchers, and slaughterhouse workers run the risk of contracting the disease more than others. Objectives: This study was aimed at the evaluation of occupational behaviors and practices of butchers and meat industry workers regarding CCHF based on the health belief model (HBM). Methods: The present descriptive-analytical study was carried out among 207 local butchers working in slaughterhouses who were selected by cluster sampling in Qom City in the first six months of 2019. To collect data, a researcher-made questionnaire based on the HBM constructs was used. The validity and reliability of the questionnaire have been verified. The data were analyzed by SPSS version 21 using regression analysis and Pearson correlation coefficient. Results: A total of 141 (68.12%) of the participants used personal protective equipment, including appropriate workwear, gloves, mask, goggles, and boots when they had direct contact with raw meat products. There were significant positive relationships between CCHF preventive behaviors and perceived barrier structures (P = 0.003), perceived benefits (P = 0.004), perceived severity (P = 0.002), perceived susceptibility (P = 0.001), and cues to action (P = 0.001). Based on linear regression analysis, perceived susceptibility was able to predict 96% of the variance of CCHF preventive behaviors in Qom’s butchers. Conclusions: Perceived susceptibility is a predictor of CCHF preventive behaviors; thus, future plans and programs are suggested to be based on the HBM and emphasize increasing perceived susceptibility and other constructs of this model to improve the disease-preventing behaviors of butchers.