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Taking Care In This Section

Needlestick/Exposure to Blood Borne Pathogens

Staff may be exposed to blood borne pathogens (BBPs) in the course of their job duties.

An exposure is generally defined as a percutaneous injury (e.g., a needlestick or cut with a sharp object), contact of mucous membrane or non-intact skin with blood, tissue or body fluids that are contaminated with visible blood.

What to do if you are exposed

  • Wash and/or irrigate the exposure site
  • Report the incident to your supervisor
  • Complete a Report of Injury (ROI) form as soon as possible. You can get this form from your supervisor.
  • Seek medical treatment as you feel necessary or as directed by your manager.  Employee Health will see you to provide appropriate care, education, and follow up after an exposure. Please call the Employee Health clinic at 7-4166 to schedule an appointment, or contact Urgent Appointments or the Emergency Department if Employee Health is closed. You will be directed to follow up with Employee Health the next business day.  If you choose instead to see your primary care provider, you may be asked to also follow up with Employee Health prior to returning to work.   

What you can do to prevent exposure

  • Observe standard precautions - wear gloves, safety glasses, and a mask - when performing any activity where the potential exists for BBP exposure.
  • Familiarize yourself with, and use, safety devices on needles, syringes, and intravenous equipment.
  • Complete the Hepatits B immunization series with documented presence of antibody to Hepatitis B.
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