Needlestick injuries during surgery

  1. 0
    If an OR staff member is injured during a case from a dirty hypo/blade/suture. When does the surgeon gain consent from the patient to test their bloodwork: before surgery, or after the exposure happens? What does your hospital do?
    The reason I am asking is I think our current process is possibly old and outdated. PM me if you would prefer, Thanks!

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  2. 5 Comments...

  3. 0
    where I work, the charge nurse gets consent only if a needle stick happens. Our policy actually states that consent is not needed from the patient, but we always ask the family or significant other to sign a consent, as the patient is usually under effects of anesthesia at the point the needlestick happens. I am the charge nurse, and never have I had a family or patient give me any flak about drawing blood in a case like that. We always explain what we are testing for & why, and assure them that they won't be charged.
  4. 0
    It's covered in our consent so that we don't have to wait to draw blood until either the patient is out of anesthesia or we track down a family member.
  5. 0
    Our current process is to have the surgeon as the patient/family in recovery. This has recently been a problem because the process has been challenged (a surgeon refusing to gain consent or give the order because "its not their problem".) As nurses can't give orders: it can put non-medical staff at risk. Is this covered right on your surgical consent, and addressed prior to every case? Like blood products, photography, ect?
  6. 0
    There are frequently state laws that govern this.

    In IL, you need no consent if there is a needlestick or exposure to body fluids.
  7. 0
    Our consent for treatment has a specific section that asks for permission to test for HIV & hepatitis in the event of a needle stick. The patient initials "yes, I consent" or "no, I do not consent."

    Waiting until after surgery doesn't seem appropriate. Anyone with a needle stick must report to employee health or the ER within 2 hours of the incident & are held there until the patient's rapid HIV comes back.


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