Needlestick Injury claims
Needlestick injuries, or sharps injuries, occur through coming into contact with a needle, blade or scalpel. If you have suffered a needle stick injury whilst at work, you could be entitled to compensation. Get in touch with Carrs solicitors to find out how we could help you.
Injuries and infections
There are thought to be over 20 diseases that can be transferred by accidental needlestick injury but the main risk is the transfer of three serious blood-borne viruses:
- Hepatitis B (HBV)
- Hepatitis C (HCV)
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
The chance of a needlestick injury causing fatalities is rare, with only 4 cases ever being reported. However, it is often the fear of waiting for test results which is most stressful and problematic for an individual. The possibility of having to adapt to life with an incurable illness can cause many emotional and physical problems.
Between 1996 and 2009 the Health Protection Agency were notified of seventeen healthcare workers who had been infected with Hepatitis C after coming into contact with a needle in the work place. According to the HPA, the number of incidents involving exposure to needles actually increased by 49% between 2002 and 2005.
Whenever someone has been exposed to a used needle or blade it is vital to report the incident under RIDDOR and to seek medical attention, even if the injury does not seem severe. It’s important to rinse the injury with plenty of soap and water, but not to scrub. Medical intervention should be sought as drugs are available to stop any infections being transferred. After which, tests would be run in order to determine whether any illnesses have been caught by the victim.
Who should claim?
It’s not solely health and social care professionals who are at risk due to the prevalence of drug misuse, needlestick injury can occur in any place at which drug abuse can occur creating a particular hazard for rented property maintenance workers, construction professionals, refuse collection workers and anyone who is employed to do maintenance work gardening or cleaning of public spaces.
Employers in any type of work where there is a risk of laceration or penetrating injury have a duty to maintain site security and to provide amongst other things suitable personal protective gloves.
If you’ve suffered a needle stick injury you are likely to have a claim even if you have not been diagnosed with an illness. Living life under the fear of developing a serious infection or illness can cause traumatic emotional, financial and physical barriers and psychological injury for which you may be entitled to compensation. Carrs Solicitors can help you decide whether you have a legitimate claim and what to do next.
Get in touch with our expert solicitors
Most needlestick injuries at work are preventable and where the injury was made possible as a result of a breach of your employer’s legal duties. Carrs Solicitors have the experience and knowledge help you get the compensation you deserve and to hold the employer or other person responsible for the site. In effect their insurers would be liable to pay your compensation but by seeking redress you are holding them accountable and encouraging the upkeep of reasonable health and safety standards in the future.