Needlestick Accident Claims

We know that receiving a needlestick injury can be both painful and stressful. If you’ve been injured due to the negligence of your employer, then you could claim compensation.

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We know that receiving a needlestick injury can be both painful and stressful.  If you’ve been injured due to the negligence of your employer, then you could claim compensation.

What is a needlestick injury?

Needlestick injuries can happen if a ‘sharp’ or needle accidentally goes through the skin.  If, for example, the needle has taken infected blood and it accidentally pierces someone’s skin, the infection could be transmitted to that person.

Who is at risk from a needlestick injury?

Hospital workers are particularly vulnerable to this kind of accident from:

  • Incorrectly disposing of used needles
  • Defective equipment
  • Lack of protective clothing or equipment
  • Fatigue after doing long hours

The NHS will likely have a needle stick injury protocol, with which you should familiarise yourself. The Health and Safety (Sharp Instruments in Healthcare) Regulations 2013 (pdf) also apply to the healthcare sector.

Other workers at risk are:

  • Prison officers
  • Tattooists
  • Cleaners
  • Refuse workers

Your employers are responsible for your protection under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

What would be the first thing to do if you sustained a sharps injury?

You need to apply first aid as soon as you can.  The NHS recommend:

  • Encourage the wound to bleed, ideally by holding it under running water
  • Wash the wound using plenty of soap – do not scrub it
  • Do not suck the wound
  • Dry the wound and cover it with a plaster or dressing

If the injury has happened at work, report it to your employer and occupational health.  You may need blood tests, to make sure you have not been infected by contaminated blood, such as HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C.

Why make a needlestick compensation claim?

As well as the initial shock of it happening, there is the subsequent bleeding, pain and swelling.  There may also be the added stress of worrying whether the needle contained contaminated blood that could infect you.

Making a claim not only highlights any professional or clinical negligence, it can also ease the financial worries of treatment, time off work, counselling, hospital visits and general recovery. More about making a claim

How much compensation will I receive for a needlestick injury claim?

That depends on the nature and severity of your injury, the recovery time and whether there is any lasting damage.  Medical reports will be used to help assess this.

Is there a time limit for making a claim?

There is usually a three-year period, from the date of the accident.

I think I have a claim, what do I do next?

You can call us, request a callback or complete our enquiry form.  Our legal advisors will discuss your situation and assess whether you have a claim.  There is no charge for our initial advice and you are under no obligation to make a claim unless you are happy to do so.

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