Monday, October 28, 2013

Post-Exposure Follow-Up

Post-Exposure Follow-up

Potential Hazard
  • No post-exposure follow-up made available after a needlestick/sharps injury to help document injury or offer medically indicated post-exposure prophylaxis.
Possible Solutions
  • Employer should ensure that a Post-Exposure Evaluation and Follow-up is in place to handle needlestick/sharps injuries.
  • Employer should provide a confidential medical evaluation and follow-up to the exposed employee, immediately following the report of an exposure incident [29 CFR 1910.1030(f)(3)]. It is recommended that the follow-up include identifying injury patterns and accident analysis to determine if other training, procedures, or safer needle devices should be used to prevent future accidents.

    • Post-exposure evaluation and follow-up should include:

  • Maintain a log of injuries from contaminated sharps [29 CFR 1910.1030(h)(5)].

  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommends that if an employee experiences a needlestick/sharps injury or is exposed to blood or other body fluid during the course of work that the following steps be taken immediately:

    • Wash needlestick and cuts with soap and water.
    • Flush splashes to the nose, mouth, or skin with water.
    • Irrigate eyes with clean water, saline, or sterile irrigates.
    • Report the incident to your supervisor.
    • Seek medical treatment immediately.
  • Questions about appropriate medical treatment for occupational exposures to blood is available 24 hours from the Clinicians' Post Exposure Prophylaxis Hotline (PEPline) (1-888-448-4911).

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