Sharps The Safe Use and Handling of - Safe System of Work

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1 2017 Sharps The Safe Use and Handling of - Safe System of Work Pendragon PLC 2/8/2017

2 Sharps The Safe Use and Handling of SSOW This Safe System of Work (SSOW) is designed to communicate group best practice in regards to using and handling Sharps. These principles must be followed when performing any operations that involve the use or handling of sharps to help minimise the risks presented. It is important to note that this information has been produced to complement existing training and experience in your role. Contents Use of designated Sharps Equipment Handling Sharps and Needle stick Injuries Risk Control Principles C Control This is the control that the groups requires you to implement to help endorse a safe working practice A A brief description of how to implement the controls or where to find additional information on how to implement the control R Why you need to implement the control and the consequences of not doing so.

3 SSOW - Safe System Of Work The Use of Designated Sharps Equipment Different role and activities within the business use different types of sharps equipment including: razor blades, Stanley knifes, scissors and box cutters. The following control measures should be endorsed whilst using any form of sharps equipment Control Correct Selection Before working with sharps ensure you have selected the correct instrument to do the task that provides the correct protection Different types of blades offer different levels of controls. The use of single razor blade (as pictured) should be avoided. There should be a safe place/handle to hold the blade allowing for a proper grip whilst using. The blade should also be sharp enough to perform the task at hand. Excessive force can lead to the blade slipping Poor selection of a blade will increase the likelihood of injury. Just using an uncovered razor blade decreases the grip on the blade meaning the user is more likely to slip causing injury or damaging the product Control Grip and Dexterity Ensure you have maximum dexterity and grip when using a sharp instrument You should keep your hands warm whilst using a sharp instrument to maintain dexterity. This can be achieved by wearing gloves however the glove selection must not effect finger dexterity and provide a good level of grip. Suitable glove selection is available from Quickco Cold fingers lowers grip increasing the likelihood of slipping when handling a sharp instrument. Thick gloves although keeping the hands warm will make gripping a blade difficult. Therefore the correct glove selection should be made

4 Control - Storage Any sharp instruments should be stored in a designated area, away in any cases provided in a location that people can spot them. They should NEVER be kept in pockets (unless it is a specific safety blade) or be left unguarded/open in a drawer. They should also NEVER be left unattended in a public access area or a customer vehicle. Any department that uses sharps should have a designated storage area that all relevant Team Members are aware of. Any blades that have a cover/sheath must have this installed prior to storage. Many sharps injuries occur when a blade has been stored in a drawer or kept in a pocket and an unassuming individual puts their hand into that location and slices it on the blade that they did not know was there. Control Working Environment When performing a task that involves the use of a sharp instrument it is important to be aware of what you are cutting and ensure you have full visibility and control when cutting When presented with a task that involves the use of sharp instrument ensure you can identify what you are cutting. For example you may be cutting into a box that has plastic oil containers in it. If you cut to deep you may split the oil containers casing a spillage. Take note of what you are cutting and select the correct implement for the task. Also ensure you have full visibility of what you are cutting never cut in area that you cannot see or make cut unless you have a stable footing and control of the blade being used. Lack of awareness of what you are cutting can lead to the damage of products and other potential hazards. Cutting blind or not having a stable footing can lead to inaccurate cutting and the potential to slip and injure yourself.

5 SSOW - Safe System Of Work Handling Sharps and Needle stick Injuries Any injuries as a result of sharps incident or a Needle stick injury should be attended to by a trained First Aider. The majority of these types of injuries will result in a cut, prick or laceration that leads to bleeding. Upon discovery of a Needle If you find a needle DO NOT leave it unattended. If within a customer car inform your Leader who is advised to contact the customer to discuss the needle and the potential hazards it possess. If the needle is found on the premises it should be carefully picked up using a litter grab (or alternative grabbing device) and placed within a hard concealable container that the needle cannot penetrate. DO NOT put it in the general waste or a plastic bag. The ideal location is a designated sharps box which is available from First Aid Suppliers such as St John Ambulance. The container should be taken to the location of the needle to avoid the risk of carrying the needle. For disposal of the needle, contact your local Councils Environmental Health Department for advice. Needle Stick Injuries Needlestick injuries occur when the skin is punctured by a hypodermic needle. Such injuries are caused by accidental contact with discarded needles, mainly due to careless or malicious disposal of the needle by the original user. Sharps injuries can be caused by literally anything capable of cutting or puncturing the skin. Every Team Member must exercise care when working, especially in public or open places including public owned vehicles we are working on Action to be taken in the event of a needlestick/sharps injury. ***DO NOT SUCK THE WOUND***. If a needlestick injury occurs encourage bleeding immediately by applying pressure above the site where the needle pierced the skin and force bleeding. Wash the area with running water and soap if available or cleansing wipes until running water and soap is available. Report the situation to your Leader immediately. Make arrangements to attend the nearest Accident and Emergency Department urgently. You will need to explain that you have received a needlestick/sharps injury and require attention. The main risks from needlestick and sharps injuries are Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and there is also a small risk of Human Immunodeficiency Viruses (HIV) and other less common infections. Hepatitis B can be immunised against (but it is not always seen

6 to be effective) and there is an antidote. Hepatitis C and HIV have no effective immunisation or antidote. Hepatitis can survive outside the host s body (e.g. in dried blood) for up to 6 months. Infection can be caused by direct injection of contaminated body fluids or via cuts/sores in the skin, or via the eyes and mouth. Blood Contamination The sites first aider should have the knowledge on how to dispose of blood stained tissue and dressings. All areas contaminated with blood should be cleaned and disinfected wearing appropriate gloves and covering skin that may come into contact with the spillage.

7 PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS PAGE IS ONLY TO BE USED WHEN THE DOCUMENT HAS BEEN PRINTED OUT TO READ IF READING THE DOCUMENT ON THE MY SAFE CENTA SYSTEM THERE IS NO REQUIRMENT TO COMPLETE THIS Questions and Declaration Please declare any questions below that you have regarding the content of this document or anything that is not included that you would like including Please fill the details out below to confirm that you have read and understand the content of this document and that you are aware of where to access the information for future use. Once complete return this page only to your team leader. Name: Signature: Date: (This section for Team Leader Completion) Team Leader Name: Team Leader Signature: Date:

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