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Needlestick Injury: Impact of a Recapping Device and an Associated Education Program

Michael Whitby, Pat Stead and Jake M. Najman
Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Vol. 12, No. 4 (Apr., 1991), pp. 220-225
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30146995
Page Count: 6
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Needlestick Injury: Impact of a Recapping Device and an Associated Education Program
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Abstract

Objective: To determine the impact of the introduction of a plastic shield-shaped device (Needleguard, Biosafe, Auckland, New Zealand) and education program designed to allow safer recapping, on recorded rates of needlestick injury. Design: A before-after trial with a two-year duration of follow-up. Setting: Tertiary referral hospital. Participants: Nursing and other hospital personnel. Results: Prospectively collected baseline data, together with the results of an anonymous questionnaire of 25% of the hospital nursing staff, defined a reported needlestick injury rate of 6.9 per hundred full-time nursing staff per year. In the pre-intervention period, there were 6.7 needlestick injuries per 100 nursing staff members per year reported. This increased to 15.4 (p<.0001) needlestick injuries per 100 nursing staff members per year after the intervention. An anonymous survey undertaken at both time periods suggests that the apparent increase in officially reported needlestick injuries is due to an increase in the willingness of nurses to now report previously unreported needlestick injuries. Conclusions: The impact of the safety device and education program was the more accurate reporting of needlestick injuries; many nursing staff continued to resheath needles contrary to hospital policy. Many staff simply did not use the newly designed safety device. Approaches to improving compliance with such safety devices are considered.

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