Staff, volunteers and guests are at risk of HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C infection from the transfer of body fluids [especially blood and saliva] through:

1] Puncturing of the skin with a used needle or other used sharp instrument

2] Human bites

3] Splashing of mucous membranes [mouth and eyes]

4] Contact of body fluids with non-intact skin

General Guidelines

1] All workers should be advised to have the complete series of Hepatitis B vaccine
It is recommended that the employer pay for the Hep B vaccine for all staff
If not the Vaccine can be given by your family Dr for a fee

2] All other immunizations should be up to date [tetanus, polio, and yearly TB mantoux skin test]

3] All workers should be trained in universal precautions

4] Inservice education and resource material will be made available to staff, volunteers and guests [on HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, TB]

5] RELAX! There is only a minimal risk of contracting HIV through a needlestick injury


Handling of “SHARPS” to prevent penetrating injury:

1] Be aware that needles and other sharp objects can be found any where e.g. in garbage, under mattresses, under cushions, etc.

2] If you do find a needle or sharp object, discard it in a puncture proof container. A biohazard container is preferable because once full this container can be incinerated. If a biohazard container is not available the needle can be disposed of in a puncture proof thick plastic container and the cap is replaced. This container can then be discarded into the garbage

3] When handling needles or other sharp objects use plastic gloves and/or tongs

4] Wear footwear that cannot be penetrated by a needle to prevent puncture by accidentally stepping on a discarded needle


1] First Aid

In the case of a puncture wound [needles, human bite];

A] Allow site to bleed under cold running water

B] Wash the area with soap and water and
dry-cover affected area

C] Report incident to immediate supervisor
within 24 hours

D] Find out source of needle if possible

E] RELAX-there is only minimal risk of
contracting HIV through needlestick injury

In case of a splash exposure;

A] Rinse the affected area [eyes, nose, mouth] With large amounts of water
B] Notify supervisor

2] Notify supervisor within 24 hours
Fill out appropriate paperwork
-Incident report

-Insurance forms

-Workman’s compensation forms

3] Seek medical attention
It is important to seek medical attention
immediately within 24 hours of injury
-Hospital emergency
-Walk-in clinic
-Family Dr

* You will have bloodwork done and possible immunization against tetanus, diphtheria, and hepatitis B

4] During the 3-month waiting period for the final blood test results you should abstain from sex or have sex with double condoms. Your partner should be notified that you had a needlestick injury and therefore the partner is at risk of HIV, Hep B & C


1] It is recommended that the employee

a] Receive one dose of hepatitis B
vaccine and HBIG [gammaglobulin]

b] The employee can receive the
remainder of the series of vaccine at
the family Dr.

c] If the employee has already completed
the series of vaccinations…. Blood
work might be done to check antibody

d] If the series of Hep B vaccine is not
complete you will be given a dose of
hep B vaccine

2] A baseline test for HIV and Hep B & C is
recommended now and should be repeated at
3 months

3] A booster may be required for other
disease especially tetanus and diphtheria

4] The attending physician may recommend AZT
and/or other medications if the source is
known to be HIV positive