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How to Increase Surgeon Safety by Decreasing Sharps Injuries

Sharps injuries refer to injuries that occur as a result of being stabbed by a sharp object in a health care setting. These can include wounds from needles, scalpels, blades or other sharp medical objects. These injuries typically occur as a result of working in a fast-paced stressful medical environment, and surgeons work in one of the most stressful medical environments. However, there are ways to decrease the amount of sharps injuries and increase overall surgeon safety.

Implementing Blunt-Tip Suture Needles

One of the most common occurrences of sharps injuries experienced by surgeons involves passing of instruments during surgery. Sharps injuries involving suture needles make up approximately 43% of all injuries that occur in the operating room. In order to reduce the amount of sharps injuries, using blunt-tip needles is a solution. Blunt-tip needles can be used for a variety of tissues, including muscle and subcutaneous tissue. Multiple organizations devoted to employee health recommend them, including OSHA and the FDA.

Including Hands-Free Zones

Since passing of instruments can result in sharps injuries and decrease surgeon safety, one method to decrease sharps injuries is to implement a hands-free zone. Sharp instruments can be placed into a container before they are passed to the surgeon. This can reduce the overall sharps injuries by more than half in an operating room.

Include Devices Engineered for Safety

Health device manufacturers have included a variety of new devices that are designed to reduce the amount of sharps injuries that medical providers obtain. For example, safety scalpels exist that have retractable blades. Hospitals and healthcare providers should always be willing to try new medical devices that may help prevent injuries.

Sharp Fluidics provides healthcare providers with equipment designed to reduce sharps injuries.

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