Have legislative interventions impacted the incidence of needlestick injuries?

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O'Sullivan, G.
Gallagher, John
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Irish Medical Organisation
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Introduction: The aim of this study was to examine the impact the EU Directive for the Prevention of Sharps injuries had on the incidence of needlestick injuries (NSI) in Ireland. Methods: A five-year retrospective study prior to, and after the introduction of these regulations, was conducted. Secondary data from the Occupational Health Department’s annual NSI reports were used. The population studied were healthcare workers who reported a NSI from 2013 to 2017. Results: The incidence of NSI varied from 157 in 2017 to 207 in 2014. ‘Miscellaneous needles’ was the category which caused the most NSI (23%). ‘Disposable needles with syringes’ accounted for 20% of all NSI before the legislation; this figure was reduced to 12-15% after the regulations were introduced. Conclusion: The EU regulations did not reduce the incidence of NSI. A lower incidence of NSI was reported from ‘disposable needles with syringes’ after the implementation of the regulations.
EU Directive for the Prevention of Sharps Injuries , Needlestick injuries , NSI , Ireland
O’Sullivan, G. and Gallagher, J. (2020) 'Have legislative interventions impacted the incidence of needlestick injuries?', Irish medical journal, 112(10), P1023 (7pp). Available at: http://www.imj.ie/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Have-Legislative-Interventions-Impacted-the-Incidence-of-Needlestick-Injuries.pdf (Accessed: 13 May 2020)
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