VHPB recommendations of injection safety and safe blood supply (April 1998)

Source : Fact Sheet 3 (see publications)

Injection safety

The VHPB recommends:

  • education of healthcare providers and the public about the dangers of unsafe injections;
  • education of healthcare providers and the public on appropriate and inappropriate use of injections;
  • insistence that a separate sterile needle and a separate sterile syringe be used for each injection, and then properly disposed of;
  • use, wherever possible, of auto-destruct syringes and the provision of adequate supplies of sterile needles and syringes and sterilising equipment as appropriate;
  • routine evaluation of the effectiveness of prevention programmes;
  • research into the extent of the problem of unsafe injections in Eastern and Central Europe and the NIS.


A safe blood supply

  • All countries should develop a structured blood transfusion service to ensure the safety of blood through proper donor selection, blood collection and testing, and appropriate use. All donations should be screened for HBsAg, anti-HCV and anti-HIV.
  • Although the most recent and technologically advanced screening assays may not be available in many countries because of financial, logistical or technical constraints, this should not prevent the development of an effective blood screening programme. The undisputed benefit of screening all blood donations far outweighs concerns over the absolute sensitivity of the available assays.
  • The international community should ensure that countries in greatest need receive resources necessary to achieve safe blood use. Manufacturers of reagents are urged to make affordable screening tests available to developing countries.