The impact of multifocused interventions on sharps injury rates at an acute-care hospital

Robyn R.M. Gershon, Lisa Pearse, Martha Grimes, Patricia A. Flanagan, David Vlahov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


OBJECTIVE: To determine the impact of a multifocused interventional program on sharps injury rates. DESIGN: Sharps injury data were collected prospectively over a 9-year period (1990-1998). Pre- and postinterventional rates were compared after the implementation of sharps injury prevention interventions, which consisted of administrative, work-practice, and engineering controls (ie, the introduction of an anti-needlestick intravenous catheter and a new sharps disposal system). SETTING: Sharps injury data were collected from healthcare workers employed by a mid-sized, acute-care community hospital. RESULTS: Preinterventional annual sharps injury incidence rates decreased significantly from 82 sharps injuries/1,000 worked full-time-equivalent employees (WFTE) to 24 sharps injuries/1,000 WFTE employees postintervention (P<.0001), representing a 70% decline in incidence rate overall. Over the course of the study, the incidence rate for sharps injuries related to intravenous lines declined by 93%, hollow-bore needlesticks decreased by 75%, and non-hollow-bore injuries decreased by 25%. CONCLUSION: The implementation of a multifocused interventional program led to a significant and sustained decrease in the overall rate of sharps injuries in hospital-based healthcare workers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)806-811
Number of pages6
JournalInfection Control and Hospital Epidemiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 1999


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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