Contamination exposure injury

What is a contamination incident?

An occupational exposure to a blood borne virus may occur when a staff member is contaminated with the body fluids of another person. The significance of the exposure will depend upon the individual circumstances and can be assessed as described below.

What should I do immediately if I have sustained a needle-stick injury?

1. First Aid:

(a) Needle-stick/broken skin/bite/scratch with broken skin:

  • Encourage bleeding
  • Wash injury thoroughly with warm water and soap.
  • Cover with waterproof plaster

(b) Eye and mucous membrane contamination:

  • Flush the area with copious amounts of running water.

2. Report incident to manager.

3. Contact Working Well (Occupational Health) on 0300 421 4455 between 08.30 –16.30 Monday to Friday. Outside of these hours, contact ED at Cheltenham General Hospital or Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.

4. Complete a Datix report.

What should I do immediately if one of my staff suffers a contamination incident?

There is a GOLDEN HOUR for the management of contamination injuries. It is very important that the risk assessment is completed as soon as possible. If HIV prophylaxis is indicated, it gives the best results if given within 1 HOUR of the injury.

For more information, view our full contamination incident guide

Working Well (Occupational Health)
0300 421 4455 (Mon-Fri 8.30-4.30)

Emergency Dept Gloucestershire Royal
0300 422 6600
24 hours

Emergency Dept Cheltenham General
0300 422 3046
24 hours