Q: Our orthopedic practice only gives steroid injections. Are we required to use safety needles?
A: Yes. The use of safety needles is a requirement for any healthcare facility that is subject to the Bloodborne Pathogens standard.
OSHA’s 2004 letter of interpretation, “Bloodborne Pathogens Standard application to small healthcare facilities and the annual review of the Exposure Control Plan,” explains that physician offices, clinics, and dental practices must provide safety-engineered sharps devices and needleless systems to employees.
For more on this subject, see the October 2011 Medical Environment Update feature article, “Needlestick hazards in nonhospital settings? Better believe it.”