Needlestick Injury Claims
Needlestick injuries are one of the types of injuries within the “sharps” category. Sharps injuries include all injuries involving skin penetration sustained by needles, blades, scalpels or other medical equipment. They can be incredibly painful and very hard to avoid if you work in a high-risk environment. Needlestick injury claims occur when an individual has been injured by a sharp medical instrument, and as a result take legal action against the establishment within which they sustained their injury.
Needlestick injuries cause fear and panic due to the fact that they can potentially cause the transmission of harmful blood borne diseases such as hepatitis B and C, and HIV. The trauma, worry and depression that is experienced by the sufferer can be extreme and long lasting, especially if they have to wait for periodic blood test results to confirm whether they are infected by anything sinister as a result.
A common environment within which to sustain needlestick injuries is the workplace. Cleaners, especially in hospitals, can be the victim of needles being carelessly abandoned or placed into the wrong waste bin. The emergency services are often exposed to extremely volatile situations where there may not be the luxury of time to check all surfaces, such as when the police carry out a drug raid or attend any dubious crime scenes. Paramedics often have to act incredibly fast to save lives and are often left open to needlestick and other types of “sharps” injuries.
If you are working in an environment where medical supplies are present then look very carefully before moving items, especially waste bins and bin bags. Cleaners should always assume that waste items of any kind are potentially dangerous and approach their removal with extreme care. Always carry dustbin bags away from the body in case there are any sharp objects inside and never use your hands to press down on bags to compress them. For those working in the emergency services, it is advisable to approach all soft objects with caution because of the possibility of the presence of drug use paraphernalia.
If you have sustained a needlestick injury, firstly, and according to the NHS website, do not suck the wound but rather encourage it to bleed freely, preferably under running water. Wash it with soap but do not rub it whilst washing. Dry the affected area and cover with a plaster. Then go straight to your nearest A&E department for emergency advice. If you were at work when the injury occurred, then go to the company occupational health department and report the incident as soon as possible.
In the unlucky event that you are the victim of a needlestick injury and need a firm of solicitors to represent you in a legal claim for injury compensation, then WINWales can help.
Jonathon Lee Jarman
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