How much do sharps injuries cost the NHS?

Healthcare workers are regularly faced with needlestick injuries (NSI) and while it might not be a standout issue, the financial implications across the NHS are damning.

According to the NHS Resolution’s annual report and accounts (2016/ 2017), it received 1,833 incident claims for needlestick injuries between 2012 and 2017 (fiscal years). Of these, the 1,213 successful claims cost the NHS £4,077,441.

The NHS Resolution report stated that if the NHS had not spent the more than £4 million, it could have funded 125 band 5 nurses for one year.

“The figure could be higher as 326 claims remain open. The harm and cost are largely avoidable,” the report stated.

“By failing to prevent needlestick injuries, trusts can be found to be in breach of regulations (health and safety law), which could result in notices of contravention…organisations could also face costly legal claims.”



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