The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Routine Venipuncture. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Protect Yourself

The safety of both the phlebotomist and patient is of utmost concern at all times. In the unfortunate event of an accidental needlestick or if you get blood or other potentially infectious materials in your eyes, nose, mouth, or on broken skin, immediately flood the exposed area with water and clean any wound with soap and water or a skin disinfectant if available. Report this immediately to your employer and seek immediate medical attention. It is imperative that the phlebotomist follow facility protocol for reporting the incident. This ensures prompt treatment for the injury. The facility procedure must be followed whether the accidental puncture was from a clean or contaminated needle.

The single most important element to prevent an accidental needlestick is for the phlebotomist to fully concentrate during every procedure. Keeping your mind on the task at hand contributes to a successful and safe result.