Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 21:24 EDT

Safe in Common Endorses Call to Action to Protect Healthcare Personnel from Exposure to Bloodborne Diseases

May 8, 2012

NEW YORK, May 8, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Safe in Common, a non-profit organization of healthcare safety advocates, today announced its support and endorsement of the Consensus Statement and Call to Action to reduce the risk of healthcare personnel exposure to bloodborne diseases via needlestick injuries and other potential transmission modes.

Safe in Common joins the International Healthcare Worker Safety Center at the University of Virginia (UVa), the American Nursing Association (ANA), and 18 other healthcare and industry groups, that have signed the Call to Action, which recommended a number of priorities to further reduce the risk of needlestick injuries to U.S. healthcare personnel, including:

  • Improving sharps safety in surgical settings;
  • Understanding and reducing exposure risks in non-hospital settings (which include physicians’ offices, clinics, home healthcare, and an array of other settings);
  • Involving frontline personnel in the selection of safety devices;
  • Addressing gaps in available safety devices, and encouraging innovative designs and technology; and
  • Enhancing personnel education and training.

Safe in Common Chairperson Dr. Mary Foley, MS, RN, signed the Call to Action on behalf of thousands of U.S. healthcare personnel who have taken the Safe in Common Needlestick Safety Pledge since the launch of a national campaign last month. The Safe in Common campaign is seeking to secure the pledges of more than 100,000 healthcare personnel this year who are committed to promote and strengthen the Federal Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act, raise awareness of needlestick safety, and utilize safer engineering controls to better protect those at risk of unnecessary needlestick injuries.

“As a lifelong proponent of reducing needlestick injuries, I am proud to join the ANA, the International Healthcare Worker Safety Center and other national organizations in signing this Call to Action on behalf of Safe in Common,” Dr. Foley said.

“Needlestick injuries remain a pervasive problem within U.S. healthcare facilities despite the strong efforts of our industry over the last decade to comply with federal standards. It is now time for the nation’s healthcare personnel to join together once again to help minimize, and where possible eliminate, the risk of needlestick injuries.

In endorsing the Consensus and Call to Action, Safe in Common is sending a strong, unified message from among its ranks of healthcare personnel that decision-makers need to make needlestick safety a priority and further provide assurance that personnel have the access to appropriate devices, educational and training materials, and a supportive safety climate.

Dr. Foley supported the comments of ANA President Karen A. Daley, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN, who said at the launch of the Consensus Statement and Call to Action in March that: “needlestick injuries are preventable and cannot be tolerated as a cost of doing business. Healthcare organizations are charged with ensuring safety and preventing harm–to patients, employees and the public. Unfortunately, needlesticks still occur, whether from lack of education and training, complacency or frugality.”

UVa Professor and Center director Janine Jagger, MPH, PhD, said, “We’re pleased that Safe in Common has joined the effort to address continued risks to healthcare workers from needlesticks and sharps injuries. We’ve made significant progress over the last decade in reducing this risk, but we need to maintain our focus and coordinate efforts to keep the trend moving downward.”

For more information about Safe in Common and the Needlestick Safety Advocacy Tour, or to take the pledge, please visit http://www.safeincommon.org.

To see the UVa Statement, and a list of endorsing organizations, please visit the Center’s website: http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/pub/epinet/ConsensusStatementEndorsingOrgs.pdf

About Safe in Common

Safe in Common is a non-profit organization established to enhance and save the lives of U.S. healthcare personnel at risk of harm from needlestick injuries. It is led by Chairperson Mary Foley, PhD, RN, former President of the American Nursing Association and other industry leaders. Follow Safe in Common at http://www.facebook.com/safeincommon or http://www.twitter.com/safeincommon.

Media Contacts:
Joe McGurk
KCSA Strategic Communications for Safe in Common
P: 212-896-1231

SOURCE Safe in Common

Source: PR Newswire