|Title:||Management of Occupational Exposure to Blood and Body Fluids in the Health Care Setting|
|Document ID:||Operational Directive OD 0091/07|
|Date of issue:||Thursday, 20 December 2007|
|Status:||NO LONGER APPLICABLE|
|Description:||The purpose of this document is to provide Health Care Workers (HCW) with guidelines for the management of an exposure to another personís blood or body fluids in healthcare settings.|
|Period of effect:||from 20 December 2007|
|Authorised by:||Dr Neale Fong, DIRECTOR GENERAL, WA HEALTH, 20-Dec-2007|
|Print version:||View print version|
Management of Occupational Exposure to Blood and Body Fluids in the Health Care Setting
The purpose of this document is to provide Health Care Workers (HCW) with guidelines for the management of an exposure to another person’s blood or body fluids in healthcare settings.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV) may be transmitted by significant exposure to blood or other body fluids.
Occupational exposure is defined as an incident that occurs during the course of a person’s employment and involves contact with blood or other body substances. Such exposures may put the person at risk of acquiring a blood borne virus.
Adherence to standard infection control practices remains the first line of protection for health care workers against occupational exposure to HIV, HBV or HCV. Knowledge regarding treatment of exposures to HIV, HBV and HCV is evolving rapidly, so the advice of an appropriate medical specialist should always be sought following any exposure with a known positive or high risk source.
The risk of transmission of blood borne viruses (BBV) following an occupational exposure is dependent on the type of injury sustained, the extent of the exposure and the current viral status of the source of the exposure. A thorough risk assessment of each exposure is required to determine the risk of disease transmission.
Health care facilities (HCF) shall encourage the reporting of all exposures in a non-punitive manner and analyse the cause of exposures to address areas where improvements can be made, either by a change in work practice or introduction of safety designed devices to prevent occupational exposures occurring.
Health care facilities shall have a nominated person, who is appropriately trained to coordinate the management of all occupational exposures, and ensure procedures are in place to manage exposures occurring 24 hours a day.
Dr Neale Fong
This circular last updated: Thursday, 20 December 2007 at 11:40am