Infection Control for Healthcare Level 2 (VTQ)

55 videos, 2 hours and 36 minutes

Course Content

Health and Safety (Sharp Instruments in Healthcare) Regulations 2013

Video 7 of 55
4 min 38 sec
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Overview of Sharps Regulations in Healthcare

Introduction to Sharps Regulations

The Health and Safety (Sharp Instruments in Healthcare) Regulations 2013, commonly known as the Sharps Regulations, came into effect on 11th May 2013 to address aspects of the European Council Directive 2010/32/EU not covered by existing GB legislation.

Key Requirements of the Sharps Regulations

Under these regulations, all employers are mandated to:

  • Assess risks associated with sharps injuries
  • Implement appropriate control measures
  • Provide adequate information and training
  • Consult with employees on sharps safety

Use and Disposal of Medical Sharps

The Sharps Regulations emphasise:

  • Avoiding unnecessary use of sharps: Employers should ensure that sharps are only used when essential. Alternative needle-free equipment should be used where practicable.
  • Use of 'safer sharps': Employers must substitute traditional sharps with safer alternatives wherever possible. Safer sharps include devices that minimise the risk of accidental injury.
  • Preventing recapping of needles: Needles should not be recapped unless identified as necessary through a risk assessment to prevent contamination.
  • Secure disposal: Secure containers for sharps disposal must be readily accessible in areas where sharps are used. Clear instructions for safe disposal must be provided.
  • Special considerations: For healthcare workers operating outside controlled premises (e.g., in patients' homes), portable sharps containers and safe disposal methods must be provided.

For comprehensive details, refer to the download area of this course.