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Managing Sharps Injury

Scenario of how to manage a needle stick injury in the community. This presentation is part of the SWSI TAFE First Aid Community Sharps course.

David Keegan

on 28 July 2011

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Transcript of Managing Sharps Injury

Needle Stick Injuries 2. Ron should then wash his
hands thoroughly with soap
and water (alcohol wipes can be
used if water is unavailable) The most common type of sharps injury in the community
is a needle stick injury.

Needle stick injuries can be prevented but when they happen
you need to know how to treat them

This presentation outlines the basic steps for treating and
responding to a needle stick injury.

Follow the same steps if any other sharp object pierces
your skin that you find in public

The best form of prevention is to use the correct safety gear and
to plan for potential risks

Don't forget that blood borne viruses and other diseases can
still harm you even if your skin does not get pierced

The following is a case scenario outlining the steps that you should
follow in the event of a needle stick injury 3. Ron will next need to pat dry his hands with paper towel or a clean cloth towel. He should then apply antiseptic if available and then a bandaid. This helps to protect the wound from further risk of infection. 4. Report it 1. Ron must remain calm
(panic will increase blood flow and the risk of infection) Ron is a groundsman at the local cemetery. He notices some needles around a gravestone on his rounds. He only has some thin gardening gloves but no other safety equipment with him. It is a long walk back to his shed so he decides to pick up the syringes and put them in his wheelbarrow. On his way back to the shed he trips and falls onto the syringes and one peirces his skin.
What should Ron do at this point...? NOTE:
Immediately after a needlestick injury or blood/body substance exposure, take the following action:

if the skin is penetrated wash the area well with soap and running water (alcohol based hand rubs or wipes can be used when soap and water are not available)
if blood contacts the skin, irrespective of whether there are cuts or abrasions, wash well with soap and water
if the eyes are contaminated, rinse the area gently with water or normal saline solution while the eyes are still open
if blood gets into the mouth, spit it out and then rinse the mouth with water several times 4. Ron will then need to report the injury immediately to his Supervisor or OHS officer. Ron must see a doctor as soon as possible.

In all instances where the skin is pierced or blood or body substances enter the mouth, nose, eyes or any cuts or abrasions, the affected person must receive medical advice from a doctor as soon as possible.

Ron must also complete the appropriate workplace injury form. These are all requirements of the NSW OHS legislation.

Ron will also need to check his workplace policy and procedure to see if there is anything else that his employer requires him to do. Employers are required by the Workplace Injury Management and Workers Compensation Act 1998 to notify their insurer of any workplace injury where compensation is or may be payable.

Clause 341(h) of the OHS Regulation also requires that employers must notify WorkCover NSW of workplace exposures to blood or body substances that present a risk of transmission of blood-borne diseases. Reporting provisions for exposures to blood or body substances by non-workers such as visitors and customers also apply. WorkCover NSW may be notified by telephone on 13 10 50 or via the WorkCover website at www.workcover.nsw.gov.au
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