Needle Stick and Blood and Body Fluid Policy and Procedure

—This policy applies to all School of Medicine students.—


In keeping with Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) element 12.8, this document outlines the education of medical students about exposure prevention; the procedures for care and treatment after exposure; the definition of financial responsibility in care and treatment; and the effects of infectious and environmental disease or disability on learning.


  1. Students are introduced to the concept of infection control and work-related exposure during their first year of medical school. Education and training regarding exposures will be updated annually throughout the School of Medicine.
  2. All exposures to human blood and body fluids are to be reported immediately to the School of Medicine's Student Health Services, which maintains a 24-hour reporting system. Students, including visiting students, must contact Student Health Services between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, to report an exposure to blood and/or bodily fluid. The main contact number is 314-362-3523, and the after-hours contact number is 314-871-2966.
  3. There are standardized protocols for exposures at the School of Medicine that involve HIV, HBV and HCV (please see below).
  4. The financial coverage of the evaluation and treatment is fully covered by Student Health Services.
  5. Students who are infected with any other potentially transmissible disease will not be excluded from participating in patient care activities or restricted in their access to patient care services or facilities because of their health status, unless medically based judgments in individual cases establish that exclusion or restriction is appropriate for the welfare of patients, the welfare of other members of the patient care community, or the welfare of the individual. Please refer to the School of Medicine Technical Standards for the Medical Program for additional information.


Always Wear Personal Protective Equipment!

Needle Stick Procedure

  1. Cleanse the wound immediately with soap and water. If a mucous membrane has been exposed, rinse with copious amounts of water.
  2. Identify the source of exposure.
  3. Call Student Health Services for further instructions. The source patient will be evaluated for HIV, HBV and HCV. The physician in charge of the case is responsible for acquiring patient consent for testing. The employee or student will notify the physician. All source patient charges will be the responsibility of Student Health Services.
  4. Complete the Injury/Exposure Report form.
  5. Students will report to Student Health Services for follow-up treatment. Individuals will be evaluated for the following:
    1. HIV or serum sample save
    2. HBV vaccination
    3. Hepatitis B surface antibody testing (a positive test in the past eliminates the need for further testing)
    4. HCV testing
    5. Tetanus and diphtheria vaccination
    6. Post-exposure prophylaxis

Exposure to Blood or Body Fluid Procedure

  1. Clean the area with soap and water.
    1. Wash needle sticks and cut areas with soap and water.
    2. Flush splashes to the nose, mouth or skin with water.
    3. Irrigate the eyes with clean water or saline for 15 minutes.
  2. Identify the source of exposure. Keep the source or patient available for HIV, HBV antigen and HCV testing.
  3. Call Student Health Services for further instructions.
  4. Follow the instructions given by Student Health Services. Complete an incident report.

Last approved on October 3, 2022

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