Overcoming Education Gaps and Denial: CDC and SIPC Release New Tools to Help Clinicians Ensure Every Injection is Safe

Posted on by CDC's Safe Healthcare Blog
The Impacts of Unsafe Medical Injections in the U.S.
The Impacts of Unsafe Medical Injections in the U.S.

Author: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

Injection safety is part of the minimum expectation for safe care anywhere healthcare is delivered; yet, CDC has had to investigate outbreak after outbreak of life-threatening infections caused by injection errors.  How can this completely preventable problem continue to go unchecked?  Lack of initial and continued infection control training, denial of the problem, reimbursement pressures, drug shortages, and lack of appreciation for the consequences have all been used as excuses; but in 2012 there is no acceptable excuse for an unsafe injection in the United States. 

Eradicating unsafe practices will take a multifaceted approach, and now is the time for action to ensure that no additional patients are harmed through unsafe injections.  Today, the CDC and the Safe Injection Practices Coalition released new materials to make it easier for clinicians and others working in healthcare to learn and train others about following safe injection practices. 

Two Birds with One Stone:  Bloodborne Pathogen Training + Patient Safety – Enhanced PowerPoint

Healthcare providers or training managers who need to keep staff current on bloodborne pathogens training can now use a new presentation:  “Safe Injection Practices:  Protection Yourself and Your Patients – A Bloodborne Pathogens Training Activity.” This training was created to remind healthcare providers that measures they take to protect themselves from bloodborne pathogens and other exposures also protect patients from healthcare-associated infections.  View the training on the One & Only Campaign’s website.   

A Unique Perspective on Proper Use of Single-Dose Vials – Video

Healthcare providers and patients who want to understand how to properly use single-dose vials will benefit from viewing a new, unique animated video.  This “How to do it Right” video highlights the importance of using single-dose vials one time for one patient by following the story of Joe, a patient who ended up in the hospital with an infection as a result of unsafe injection practices.   View the video on the One & Only Campaign’s website. 

Insulin and other Injected Diabetes Medications are Personal – Posters

To educate healthcare providers about safe use of injectable diabetes medications, such as insulin pens, a new poster and brochure can help.  These materials highlight that injection instruments (e.g., insulin pens) are meant for one person and should never be shared.  Posters are available to download in PDF format on the One & Only Campaign’s website.

Spreading the Message – a Digital Press Kit

Healthcare facilities, health departments, academic institutions, patients, government officials, and clinicians interested in communicating about safe medical injections are encouraged to use the new digital press kit.  This excellent resource puts the most recent information all in one place.  Materials include a fact sheet about the impact of unsafe medical injections; a visually striking infographic showing the problem, as well as key prevention steps and consequences of not following them; a podcast for clinicians; key subject matter expert bios and quotes, and information about the One & Only Campaign. View the Digital Press Kit.

 Clinicians want to protect their patients and provide the best care possible – requiring that everyone on the staff is educated about and is following safe injection practices is an essential step toward this goal.  Please review these materials and share them widely with clinical and training colleagues.  Please leave feedback in the comments so we can incorporate your thoughts into updated versions of these materials. 

Posted on by CDC's Safe Healthcare Blog

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