Bloodborne Pathogen Exposure: Immediate Steps
In the event of a needle stick or sharps injury, or if you are exposed to blood or other potentially infectious materials, follow the steps as outlined below.
- Clean the site
- Needle-stick injuries and cuts: Wash affected area with soap and water
- Splashes to the nose, mouth or skin: Rinse with water for 10 minutes
- Splashes to the eyes: Proceed to the nearest eyewash station and flush for a minimum
of 15 minutes, rolling the eyes left to right and up and down. Contact lenses may
be gently taken out during flushing.
- If no eyewash station is available, irrigate eyes with clean water, sterile saline or sterile irrigants in the same manner as above.
- Report the incident to your immediate supervisor
Within One Hour
- Go to a licensed health care provider for an immediate medical evaluation, counseling, testing and devise a plan for followup care. Considerations for post-exposure prophylaxis: the type of exposure, type and amount of fluid/issue, infectious state of the source, and susceptibility of the exposed student. Prophylaxis should be started as soon as possible after HIV exposure.
Within Two Hours
- The student’s immediate supervisor where the incident occurred requests both the student’s and the source patient’s lab test workup (if blood or body fluid exposure). A minimum of HIV-1, HIV-2, Hepatitis B Surface Antigen and Hepatitis C Antibody testing is to be completed on both the student and the source patient.
Within 24 Hours
- Student reaches out to SMHS contact to advise of incident
- Medical student in the pre-clinical years: Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Admissions
- Medical student in the clinical years: Respective Campus Dean
- Health Sciences student: Chairperson of respective program
- Biomedical Sciences student: Chairperson of the Department of Biomedical Sciences
- Clinical and Translational Science student: Chairperson of the Department of Pathology
- Student and immediate supervisor, along with assistance from SMHS contact above, complete UND Incident Reporting Form, and submit to the Office of Safety at UND.safety@email.UND.edu and the SMHS Dean’s Office at dean@med.UND.edu. The student’s academic department shall keep a copy of the record, and retain it according to UND’s retention schedule. If the incident happened on UND’s campus, the Sharps Injury Log Form must also be completed and sent to UND’s Safety Office.
- Immediate supervisor ensures that test results of source patient are relayed to student’s health care provider. If the student chooses to withhold consent for testing, their blood sample will be housed at the facility where the incident occurred for 90 days.
- Student, immediate supervisor and health care provider complete the SMHS Return to Educational Experiences Form and return it to the respective SMHS contact (see Step 1 under 24 Hours).
- If the student refuses care, the student must complete the Refusal of Care Form and send to respective UND contact noted above, who will forward on to UND Office of Safety.
Within 48 Hours
- Associate Dean for Student Affairs and Admissions/Campus Dean/Chairperson investigates the incident and completes Part One and Part Two of the UND Incident Investigation Form and forwards on to UND’s Office of Safety.
Students, including visiting students, are responsible for all financial costs associated with an exposure.