Warning after needlestick injury

“Terrified mum-of-four has warned others to be alert after a discarded hypodermic needle got stuck in her hand while she was gardening.

” The woman, who wished to remain anonymous but lives in Queensway, Old Dalby, now faces a stressful three months before finding out blood test results for HIV and Hepatitis B and C.

“She said: “I was just doing some weeding in the front garden at about 6.30pm on Sunday.

“I bent down to pull some weeds out and felt a prick. There was a needle stuck in my hand.



We wish the lady well, and hope that she will soon be able to put this incident behind her. But the case does raise an important issue for community support and the protection of residents from sharps or needlestick injury.

Local Authorities are obliged by law to collect discarded drug litter and other hazardous waste from public areas. However, some openly refuse to collect drug litter from private property, either commercial or residential, perhaps leaving this lady with an additional cost for safe disposal of a needle that was dumped in her front garden. As we have noted many times previously in the Clinical Waste Discussion Forum, and in print, that seems to be inherently unfair.

We must urge every Local Authority to look at their policy for the collection of hazardous wastes, including needles and other drug litter, dumped into the gardens of residential properties. With no distinction between private and council-owned properties, it is surely unacceptable to reject calls for assistance in such circumstances.

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