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Friday Feature: Preventing Needlestick Injuries to Ranch Hands

Friday Feature:  Preventing Needlestick Injuries to Ranch Hands

More than 80% of workers on livestock farms have accidentally stuck themselves with needles used for vaccine and drug administration.  Accidental needlestick injuries are usually minor, but can be serious with skin infections, allergic reactions, and deep tissue wounds that require surgery.   This week’s featured video was developed by the Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH) to be used to provide employee training for dairy farm workers.  These same principles apply to workers on any type of livestock operation who are using disposable hypodermic needles for vaccine and drug administration.

Key Points to Emphasize with employees or family members regarding needle safety:

Don’t Get Stuck (Prevention)

  • Slow down and don’t rush injections

  • Restrain animals properly

  • Get help from coworkers to properly restrain animals before injection

  • Use good techniques and the correct equipment with every animal

  • Don’t remove needle caps with your mouth

  • Don’t recap used needles (Never try to reinsert used needles into the cap held in your mouth or hand)

  • Dispose of used needles in a rigid sharps disposal container

  • Discard bent, dull, or dirty needles that contact mud and manure

  • Don’t carry around syringes with needles in shirt or pants pockets while working with animals

  • Don’t dispose used needles into normal trash containers

Been Stuck (Care after accidental injection)

  • Stop working to provide care for the wound

  • Immediately wash skin thoroughly with soap and water

  • Apply topical disinfectant

  • Bandage puncture wound to prevent further contamination

  • Report injury to supervisor

  • Contact your health care provider to ensure tetnus vaccinations are current and to seek advice for wound care

To share this information with employees, print out the needlestick safety poster to display near chutes, handling facilities, and drug storage areas:

Don’t Get Stuck Needlestick Prevention Safety Poster

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If you enjoyed this video, you might want to check out the featured videos from previous weeks:  Friday Features

If you come across a humorous video or interesting story related to agriculture, please send in a link, so we can share it with our readers. Send video links to:  Doug Mayo

 

 

PG

Author: Doug Mayo – demayo@ufl.edu

Lead Editor for Panhandle Ag e-news – Jackson County Extension Director – Livestock & Forages Agent. My true expertise is with beef cattle and pasture management, but I can assist with information on other livestock species, as well as recreational fish ponds.
http://jackson.ifas.ufl.edu

Doug Mayo

Permanent link to this article: http://jackson.ifas.ufl.edu/newsletters/2017/08/12/friday-feature-preventing-needlestick-injuries-to-ranch-hands/