It’s the stuff of horror stories; needlestick injuries conjure up tabloid horror stories of people being attacked by a random person with ill on their mind. And it is true; people waiting to find out if they have got a possibly deadly disease from needlestick injuries are put through a huge amount of stress, with the agony of waiting months for test results to come through. The positive news is that it is very rare that anyone will contract a disease as a result of a needle stick injury. But that doesn’t take away the stress that you would have gone through in the process of waiting for your test results. That not knowing period can be deeply stressful and something for which you might be able to claim compensation.
Claiming for needlestick injuries
Check this list to see if there is anything that fits your situation.
1. If you were behaving in the process of your job or in an understandable fashion (i.e. you did not purposely stick your hand into a needle bin).
2. A needle punctured your skin.
For a claim to win, it is not necessary to prove that you have got a disease as a result of the injury.
Take our quick 30-second test to see if you can make a claim for needlestick injuries.
What will happen when you make a claim?
Factors that will be taken into account when deciding on the level of compensation that should be awarded include assessing the anguish that the needlestick injury claimant experiences during the “limbo” period; when a victim does not know if they have contracted a disease or not.
A good way to see if you might have a claim for needlestick injuries is to look at an example:
A claim was brought against an ambulance service by a woman who suffered a needle stick injury at work from a patient with HIV. The claimant was a nurse and had been taking blood from a collapsed patient when she scratched her finger when using a click pen that was malfunctioning. It was subsequently established that the patient was HIV positive and the claimant was told that there was a one in three hundred chance of developing AIDS. The woman was awarded several thousand pounds for the psychological stress of a possible HIV infection. The victim experienced fairly severe psychological trauma. She went on to endure post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and nausea and underwent a six-month period of AIDS testing.
The claimant brought action against the defendant claiming that it was neglectful in its health and safety duties towards its employees by providing defective equipment, which caused the accident.
The impact on claimants
Many claimants from needlestick injuries find that they have to take a significant amount of time off work, that their personal relationships are affected while they find out if they have contracted a disease and that there is often a deep emotional trauma. Accident Advice Helpline can help you take the next steps to finding out if you can make a claim.