More education and research and superior product designs are needed to end unsafe injection practices that have led to 30 infectious-disease outbreaks in the last 10 years, said a coalition of physicians, nurses, manufacturers and government officials.
In the last decade, more than 125,000 patients have been notified about potential exposure to infectious diseases such as hepatitis C due to reuse of syringes, according to the Safe Injection Practices Coalition, which was formed in 2008. Along with Premier, an alliance of more than 2,500 U.S. hospitals, the coalition co-sponsored an April 26 meeting in Washington, D.C., to discuss the problem.
“These are largely preventable medical errors — they are not so different from wrong-side surgery,” said Joseph Perz, DrPH, who leads the prevention team in the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a member of the coalition.
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