Thanks guys for all the support and info. I guess my biggest frustration is that my coworkers did not care enough to alert me before I entered this room unprotected. Next time someone asks me to answer their vent alarm I will think twice. Maybe I'm being unrealistic today, but I feel we all should have the choice to think twice and use care and extra PPE. I had to complain to the infection control nurse last time I cared for this type IV drug abuser/ 'alphabet soup' patient: all our goggles were broke and there were no eye shield masks on the unit. I also like to wear face protection for close care on infectious spitters, for some procedures (alines etc) AND on combative vented patient with infectious diseases, as that vent tubing tends to come apart at the wrong moment anyway doesn't it.
I finally got a call (48 hrs later) from the health nurse and I'm getting irked again...they are looking at this as an on the job 'accident' and 'I' must come in for a drug screen...seems like their emphasis is in pointing the finger at the employee and/or trying to prove 'I' did something wrong here. I get exposed due to lack of info, so I must prove I'm not a drug user??? <sigh> Is it just me or does this seem like punishing the victim???
Sorry for the rant/vent...bad week...<sigh> LOL!
Thanks for all the kind thoughts friends. Lab monitoring next 6 months will be provided per my EHN at this point so I will continue to hope I'm in the minority that will NOT develop the viruses. I'm aware needlesticks are the worst and glad all of you with needlesticks are doing OK.
The good nurses I've worked with have kept me on this job. Now we have lots of travelers and turnover, and nurses that don't seem to care for each other much. Maybe its time to move on. But I feel a bit stuck now...if I quit I will not be covered for this incident will I. GRRR.
Any additional comments and advice greatly appreciated friends. We don't always think clearly when this stuff happens to us. Plus I'm feeling frustrated due to feelings I expressed in the last paragraph.
Take care all. Tom perhaps I should come to your HCA hospital....mine has not treated its injured employees well. Glad you felt treated fairly. I asked about the antiviral cocktail and was told only for frank blood exposure. BUT I may ask my own PCP....great suggestion from ya'll.
Thanks as always for listening to my ramblings guys...LOL! I do appreciate so much the camaraderie on this BB and the good people here.