TJC Advises on Infections Linked to Misuse of Vials

Lena J. Weiner, for HealthLeaders Media , June 20, 2014

Tips for Clinician Leaders
The CDC's One & Only Campaign, which aims to raise awareness of safe injection practices among healthcare workers, offers specific tips for managers. These include

  • Ensuring that there are enough supplies on hand to ensure safe injections
  • Providing a medication preparation area that is separate from the patient care area
  • Arranging for infection control training

The Joint Commission urges staff to always follow safe injection practices, including correct aseptic technique, hand hygiene, and one-time only use of needles and syringes. It also urges medical professionals to discard single-use vials after one use.

If a single-use vial must be entered multiple times, a new needle and syringe should be used for each entry, TJC recommends. Also, the unused contents of multiple opened single-use vials should never be combined, and opened single-use vials should never be stored for later use.

Multiple use vials should be confined to use by a single patient whenever possible to avoid contamination, and a fresh needle and syringe should be used for each entry.

The Joint Commission also urges the education of patients and caregivers who use injectable medical products as part of a home health regimen and the creation of a culture in all care settings where staff feel prepared to report errors, near misses and adverse events.


Lena Weiner is an Associate Editor at HealthLeaders Media.
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