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Review
, 13 (3), 144, 146-53

A Review of Needle-Protective Devices to Prevent Sharps Injuries

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Review

A Review of Needle-Protective Devices to Prevent Sharps Injuries

Joanna C Trim. Br J Nurs.

Abstract

The risk of occupational transmission of blood-borne pathogens via sharp devices remains a significant hazard to both healthcare and ancillary workers. Previously, education, training, universal precautions and hepatitis B vaccination have been implemented in an attempt to reduce the risk. However, the most recent preventive strategy is needle-protective devices. These have been developed from conventional products but incorporate a safety mechanism that, when activated, covers the needletip and thus assists in the prevention of needlestick injuries and potential seroconversion to blood-borne pathogens. To date, a number of studies have been undertaken to evaluate these products, the majority of which show these devices to be safe and reliable in addition to potentially reducing associated needlestick injuries. However, to encourage the introduction of these devices in the UK, further studies are needed to either support or refute initial findings and to encourage the evaluation and subsequent implementation of needle-protective devices.

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