SafeShot Technologies, LLC today launched a new campaign called "No More Pricks" to build awareness around the needlestick injury issue which affects more than 1 million healthcare workers each year. SafeShot Technologies has developed an affordable solution to address the risk of exposure to bloodborne pathogens as well as the reusability of contaminated syringes with its patented Epiphany Vacuum-barrel Retractable Syringe. The campaign is timed during the month of May, which is dedicated to Hepatitis Awareness and HIV Vaccine Awareness Day on May 18.
This year marks the 10-year anniversary of the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act, which requires healthcare facilities to create, maintain, and annually update information on commercially available technology designed to eliminate or minimize occupational exposure to bloodborne pathogens. So, why isn't this problem getting any better? "Despite this 10-year old law, the rapid spread of hepatitis and HIV continues to soar," said SafeShot co-founder Dan Thayer. "It is estimated that nearly 40 million injections are given each day in the U.S. and Europe and only 1 in 3 needlestick injuries are actually reported."
"The purpose of the 'No More Pricks' campaign is to raise awareness on two avoidable issues with syringes today," said Dr. Robert Beart, emeritus professor of surgery at USC's Keck School of Medicine and CEO of SafeShot. "One is needlestick injury and the second is syringe reuse. Both of which are associated with disease that can afflict anyone who is around a contaminated needle... patients, healthcare professionals, sanitation workers and even police officers."
With the global production of non-safety syringes in the tens of billions, a traditional reusable syringe can be produced for about 10 cents. Due to the higher cost of safety syringes, hospitals have been slow to adopt the latest technology.
SafeShot has figured out a new way to solve both issues of reuse and needlestick injuries at a cost comparable with traditional reusable syringes. The Epiphany Safety Syringe is a one-handed, single use, auto-retractable, auto-disposable safety syringe that upon use, retracts and securely holds the contaminated needle portion in the barrel cylinder for disposal -- eliminating any risk of getting pricked or exposed to bloodborne viruses such as hepatitis or HIV. As the shot is administered, the needle retracts and the syringe itself becomes a Sharps container.
Becky Ettinger, a former registered nurse, was accidentally pricked by a contaminated needle and exposed to hepatitis B. As a result, she had to leave her nursing career. "The first thing that went through my mind was, 'Am I going to die?'" said Ettinger. "Those that are administering injections are one stick away from losing everything. It doesn't have to be this way."