If you’ve suffered a needlestick injury as a result of somebody else’s negligence, you may be eligible to make a needlestick injury claim to get compensated for your injuries and any mental suffering.
Our team can help if you’ve suffered a needlestick injury at work or due to medical negligence. We offer a no-obligation consultation where your claim will be reviewed and legal advice will be offered. If your claim is strong enough, we’ll refer you to one of our personal injury solicitors. If they agree to represent you, you’ll benefit from their No Win No Fee service which should make the claims process much less stressful.
If you or a loved one has been affected by a needlestick injury, please call 0800 6524 881 if you’d like to discuss your options. To learn more before contacting us, please read on.
Table of contents
- What Is A Needlestick Injury?
- What Conditions Can Needlestick Injuries Cause?
- Am I Eligible To Make A Needlestick Injury Claim?
- Needlestick Injury Claims Against The NHS
- Claiming Compensation For A Needlestick Injury At Work
- How Much Compensation For A Needlestick Injury Could I Claim?
- Evidence To Support A Needlestick Injury Claim
- Time Limit For Claiming Needlestick Injury Compensation
- Starting The Needlestick Injury Claims Process
Needlestick injuries occur when you are cut by a dirty or contaminated object such as a scalpel or needle. For that reason, needlestick injuries are often referred to as sharps injuries. In most cases, the injury itself will be minor. However, the more serious concern is that blood viruses such as hepatitis or HIV can be spread by needlestick injuries if the object involved has cut the skin of another person as well.
There are a variety of blood-borne viruses that you could contract following a needlestick injury. The most serious viruses include:
- Hepatitis B.
- Hepatitis C.
- Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).
The transmission of viruses from needlestick injuries will be dependent on the injured party’s immune system and many other factors. Importantly, not all needlestick injuries will cause problems and according to the Health and Safety Executive, the ratio of injuries to infections causing serious illness is very low.
However, even if you are not made ill by the needlestick injury, you may still have grounds to claim compensation for psychological injuries caused while waiting for your test results.
It’s important to note that not all needlestick injuries will mean you’re eligible to claim compensation. Before one of our personal injury solicitors takes on your claim, they will check whether:
- The defendant in the claim owed you a legal duty of care; and
- An act of negligence caused an accident or incident; and
- You suffered a needlestick injury as a result.
As many needlestick injury claims are made following accidents at work, the main law that could be used to establish a legal duty of care is the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. Your solicitor will verify which law applies in your case so don’t be too concerned about this.
Hospitals and care settings are particularly high-risk environments when it comes to needlestick injuries. You could sue the NHS as a worker or if you’ve suffered a needlestick injury because staff:
- Failed to dispose of sharps in the correct way.
- Did not use the correct protective equipment.
- Failed to adhere to the proper procedures or follow safety guidelines.
If you believe your needlestick injury was caused by NHS negligence, call us today to discuss your options.
As mentioned above, employers have a duty of care toward their staff’s safety in the workplace. If they are negligent and that leads to an accident in which you suffer a needlestick injury, you may have grounds to file an accident at work claim against them.
The types of negligence that could lead to a workplace needlestick injury include:
- If your employer did not provide personal protective equipment such as heavy-duty gloves.
- Where risky objects were not disposed of properly or labelled correctly.
- Where you were not given proper training to reduce the risk of needlestick injuries.
If your employer’s negligence led to an accident at work in which you were injured, please let us know what happened and we’ll explain your options for free.
Some of the roles that are perhaps at most risk of picking up a needlestick injury include:
- Medical staff – nurses, doctors, carers and paramedics.
- Police officers.
- Lab technicians.
- Waste disposal workers.
If you’ve suffered a needlestick injury in your job, please speak to our advisors to see if you could be due compensation.
If you do decide to make a needlestick injury compensation claim, you’ll need to base the settlement you ask for on your suffering (general damages) and any expenses that resulted from your injuries (special damages).
Therefore, if you win compensation for a needlestick injury, it could cover:
- Any physical pain caused by the injury and during any illness.
- The anxiety, distress or trauma while waiting for a diagnosis.
- The impact any illness has had on your hobbies and social life.
- Care costs if you needed support while you were ill.
- Travel costs.
- Medical expenses.
- Loss of earnings compensation.
- Future loss of earnings for longer-term suffering.
If you work with a solicitor from our team, they’ll try to understand exactly how you’ve suffered before filing your needlestick injury claim. They’ll then work hard for you to try and ensure that you are compensated fairly.
Your needlestick injury claim is likely to be completely different to anybody else’s. Therefore, at this stage, it’s not possible to say what settlement you might be entitled to. Instead, our needlestick injury compensation calculator gives a rough compensation estimate for several related injuries:
If your claim is taken on, an independent medical assessment will be arranged. This will usually happen locally with a specialist. They’ll examine you, check your medical records and discuss the impact of the needlestick injury. Their report will allow your solicitor to offer a more personalised compensation estimate.
Whether you are suing the NHS or an employer following a needlestick injury, you will need evidence to show how the accident occurred, whose negligence caused it, and the extent of your suffering.
The types of evidence that might help include:
- Camera recordings. If your accident was captured on CCTV or a bodycam, you are entitled to ask for a copy of any relevant footage. This should be done quickly as data isn’t usually stored for longer than a month.
- Medical records. Your solicitor can ask for copies of your medical records to help prove the extent of your needlestick injuries. This could include notes from when you were treated and also any test results following treatment.
- Witness details. Witness statements can be useful if the defendant denies liability for your needlestick injury. Therefore, you should provide your solicitor the contact details of anybody who saw what happened and is happy to act as a witness.
- Accident report forms. If you are the victim of a needlestick injury, you should report the incident as soon as possible. Your copy of the accident report form can be used as supporting evidence during your claim.
- Photographs. If you can, you should take photographs of the cause of your needlestick injury. Additionally, you should take pictures of any visible injuries.
We are happy to review any evidence you have collected already or provide advice on how to secure evidence for a needlestick injury claim if you’re struggling to do so. Please call today for more information.
If your claim is filed after the cutoff date, you could miss out on any compensation that might be due. Therefore, we’d suggest that you begin the claims process as soon as you can. Your solicitor will then have plenty of time to investigate, collect evidence and arrange for medical reports.
If your child has suffered a needlestick injury, the 3-year time limit will not apply. Here, you can claim on your child’s behalf at any point before they turn 18 years of age. If you don’t, they’ll need to claim themselves before they are 21 years old.
The easiest way to start a needlestick injury claim today is to call our team on 0800 6524 881. As part of our initial consultation, you’ll be given free legal advice and your chances of being compensated will be explained.
If the claim is taken on by one of our solicitors, they’ll manage all communication on your behalf, fight your corner and make sure that any settlement offer is fair. Importantly, you won’t pay their legal fees unless you receive a compensation payment as they’ll represent you on a No Win No Fee basis.
To discuss the process of filing a needlestick injury claim right away, please feel free to connect to our live chat service.