The 100% Preventable Injury
By Kent Winterbottom ACP
Needle Stick Injuries
• 7 reported needle stick injuries in 2011
• 12 reported needle stick injuries in 2010
• Over 65% of needle-sticks involve
registered nurses or nurse supervisors.
About 4% involve Paramedics or
• Number are est. based on reported
injuries to WCB
• Immunization for Hepatitis A/B
• Use needless system and adjuncts if available
• Use appropriate PPE when dealing with sharps
• Always check ambulance before and after call
• Always check equipment when exchanging with
other services. i.e. stretchers, backboards
• Immediately place used sharps in disposal
• Follow your policy and SOP for safe use of
sharps container and disposal of your sharps
• Throw sharps into the trash or on the floor
• Leave sharps on stretcher
• Stick needle into stretcher or seat pad
• Bend, Break, or Recap used needles
• Allow unsafe sharp practice to continue
Needle Stick What do I do?
• Immediately clean with antiseptic soap
and water (Hand Sanitizers)
• Seek medical attention i.e. nursing station
• Notify supervisor (policy GE-1)
• Complete WCB form (SOP administration
• Complete occurrence report (policy GE-23)
• See policy and SOP’s for complete details
How long does the HIV/AIDS virus survive
in the blood outside the body?
• very short life on an inanimate surface
• If the blood is dry, the virus usually will be
• If it is wet, a chance exists that it could
still be active.
How long can the hepatitis virus live outside
• A good rule of thumb is that wet material is infectious
and dried material is much less infectious.
• The virus can live outside the body and be infectious for
certain periods of time.
Hepatitis A Virus
• HAV can survive outside the body for months.
Hepatitis B Virus
• HBV, can still be infectious for up to a week outside the
Hepatitis C Virus
• HCV, can live outside the body for up to 16 h - 4 days.
• Always use appropriate PPE when
handling and/or disposing of sharps
• With safe sharps practice the risk of
needle stick injuries can be completely