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Oxford, February 2011: Following the adoption of the new EU Directive on the prevention of sharps injuries, and inspired by requests from healthcare professionals, global medical technology company BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) has published a set of management guides to help healthcare organisations better understand this important legislation and plan a compliance strategy.
It is estimated by the European Commission that over a million sharps injuries occur in Europe each year[i]. The EU Directive (Council Directive 2010/32/EU[ii]) is designed to help prevent healthcare workers from sustaining injuries from medical sharps such as hypodermic needles and blood collection devices, which can lead to infection with blood-borne pathogens, including hepatitis and HIV. The Directive, and early implementation guidance from key institutions, specifically cites the use of “safety-engineered” medical devices[iii] [iv].
Compliance with the Directive will be mandatory by May 2013 at the latest, but many healthcare organisations have already introduced safety programmes in advance of that deadline in order to protect staff, to avoid costly and damaging litigation, regulatory criticism or improvement orders, fines or compensation claims and reputational damage[v].
BD has distilled its experience - gained from working with a wide variety of forward-thinking healthcare organisations both across Europe and throughout the world – into a set of management guides designed to help hospitals and other healthcare institutions begin planning their compliance strategies.
Johnny Lundgren, General Manager, North West Europe, BD, comments, “Forward-thinking healthcare organisations across Europe have felt that the case for converting to safety-engineered medical device policies before the mandatory deadline is very strong, and have moved early. BD has been helping many healthcare organisations plan and implement their conversion strategies, drawing on the experience of early European adopters, the conversions in the U.S. since the 2000 passage of safety legislation, and European regions that already have mandatory requirements in place. Our research has shown that occupational health professionals are concerned that awareness of the new EU legislation is not yet sufficiently widespread. We hope that these management guides will help to increase awareness and knowledge amongst healthcare organisations.”
The management guides include:
The management guides may be obtained by sending an email to: email@example.com
BD is a leading global medical technology company that develops, manufactures and sells medical devices, instrument systems and reagents. The Company is dedicated to improving people's health throughout the world. BD is focused on improving drug delivery, enhancing the quality and speed of diagnosing infectious diseases and cancers, and advancing research, discovery and production of new drugs and vaccines. BD's capabilities are instrumental in combating many of the world's most pressing diseases. Founded in 1897 and headquartered in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, BD employs approximately 29,000 associates in more than 50 countries throughout the world. The Company serves healthcare institutions, life science researchers, clinical laboratories, the pharmaceutical industry and the general public. For more information, please visit www.bd.com.
[ii]Implementing the Framework Agreement on prevention from sharp injuries in the hospital and healthcare sector concluded by HOSPEEM and EPSU; Official Journal of the European Union; 1 June 2010.
[iii]NHS Employers, Implementation advice on sharps agreement, 12th October 2010
[iv]European Biosafety Network, Implementation Guidance for the EU Framework Agreement, Council Directive and Associated National Legislation,
[v]Examples include, Medisch Centrum Haaglanden, Atrium Medisch Centrum Heerlen, Laboratoires GEN-BIO.