Injuries from syringes (needle stick injuries) and sharps injuries (injuries caused by sharp objects such as scalpels) are relatively common place. Injuries of this kind do not just happen to those employed in health and social care. Discarded needles can present real dangers to everyone.
If you believe you are entitled to compensation due to a needle or syringe injury, contact our team of experienced solicitors today on 0161 820 9613.
Infections caused by needle & syringe injuries
Recklessly discarded syringes or scalpels can not only lead to physical injury and transmission of infection but also huge amounts of stress and anxiety whilst precautionary tests are carried out to rule out infection.
The main types of infections that can be spread in this way are;
- Hepatitis B
- Hepatitis C
Even where there has been no transmission of infection or disease the anxiety and stress caused waiting for test results can still result in compensation awards.
Re-sheathing Needle Claims for Social and Health Care Employees in Lancashire
If you work in social and health care and you have suffered a needlestick or syringe injury then your employer may be at fault whether as a result of poorly implemented procedures or as a result of a negligence by fellow employees.
Accidents often occur when preparing the needles for disposal which includes attempts to re-sheath the needle
There are a number of precautions that can be taken by an employer to protect against needlestick injuries including ;
- Ensuring all disposable sharps are placed straight into sharps containers after use rather than allowing employees to attempt re-sheathing
- Providing sufficient numbers of sharps containers to avoid overfilling
- Ensuring employees do not attempt to resheath needles manually
- Ensuring that where manual resheathing is unavoidable that the one-handed scoop method is used
- Ensuring all employees are trained in the dangers of syringe/needle re-sheathing and disposal
- Implement strict policies and training to prevent needles being left lying around
Needle Accident Case Study
T was employed by the local council as a supervisor in a civic centre. There had been a repeated problem with syringes/hypodermic needles being discarded in the building toilets.
T attempted to retrieve a discarded syringe from a bucket in the toilet whilst wearing rubber gloves when he inadvertently pricked his finger.
His employer argued that heavy duty goods had been provided but the Court of Appeal found that the heavy duty gloves would not have prevented this type of injury and that the procedure adopted by the employer was inherently unsafe.