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Safety law cut needlestick injuries by one-third: study

Charlottesville, VA – Needlestick injuries in the health care industry decreased significantly after passage of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act of 2000, according to a study from the University of Virginia.

Researchers used 1995-2005 data from 85 hospitals in 10 states to estimate the reduction in injuries and cost savings as a result of the law, which revised OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens Standard to require employers to provide safer medical devices and keep records of sharps injuries. They concluded that unintentional health care injuries decreased by more than one-third, which annually translates into 100,000 fewer sharps injuries and savings of $69 million to $415 million.

The study was published in the September issue of the journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.