Acute Communicable
Disease Control

Contact Information
County of Los Angeles
Department of Public Health
Acute Communicable Disease Control
313 N. Figueroa Street, #212
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: (213) 240-7941
Fax: (213) 482-4856

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Acute Communicable Disease Control
Injection Safety
Injection safety, otherwise known as safe infection practices, are steps taken by healthcare providers to perform injections safely to prevent the spread of infectious diseases between patients and/or the providers. This includes safe preparation and administration of medications and proper use of injection equipment, including needles, medication vials, etc. Unsafe injection practices put patients and healthcare providers at risk, but they are preventable. Because injections are common in traditional and non-traditional healthcare settings, ensuring they are performed safely is an important priority of public health.

Safety information for aesthetic (beauty) treatments is available HERE.

For the past two decades, outbreaks of bloodborne pathogens (such as Hepatitis and HIV) and bacterial infections (such as bloodstream infections and meningitis) have been linked to unsafe injection practices. The risks are linked to:
  • Reuse of needles
  • Reuse of syringes (even with a new needle)
  • Misuse of single-dose medication vials
  • Preparing medications in non-sterile areas
It is important to note that safe injection practices apply to more than traditional medical injections and should include beauty or aesthetic procedures including Botox® injections.

Information for PatientsInjection Safety Poster

Patients need to be aware that unsafe injections can be a serious threat to their health. Items used for injections (needles, syringes) should never be used more than once and should not be used from one patient to another. Reusing a needle or syringe can put patients in danger of getting diseases such as hepatitis C virus, hepatitis B virus, and HIV.
Information for Healthcare Providers
Failure to enact safe injection practices can leave your patients and staff vulnerable to transmission of bloodborne pathogens. All healthcare providers are urged to carefully review their safe injection practices and follow the CDC’s guidelines on safely preparing and administering injections, outlined below.

Safe Injections Practices outlined by the CDC: (Excerpt from the “Guideline for Isolation Precautions: preventing Transmission of Infectious Agents in Healthcare Settings 2007”). The following recommendations apply to the use of needles, cannulas that replace needles, and, where applicable, intravenous delivery systems:
  • IV.H.1. Use aseptic technique to avoid contamination of sterile injection equipment. (Aseptic technique is a method used to keep objects and areas free from contamination with microorganisms to minimize the risk to the patient; an example would be a designated medication preparation area.
  • IV.H.2. Do not administer medications from a syringe to multiple patients, even if the needle or cannula on the syringe is changed. Needles, cannulas, and syringes are sterile, single-use items; they should not be reused for another patient nor to access a medication or solution that might be used for a subsequent patient.
  • IV.H.3. Use fluid infusion and administration sets (i.e., intravenous bags, tubing, and connectors) for one patient only and dispose appropriately after use. Consider a syringe or needle/cannula contaminated once it has been used to enter or connect to a patient's intravenous infusion bag or administration set.
  • IV.H.4. Use single-dose vials for parenteral medications whenever possible.
  • IV.H.5 Do not administer medications from single-dose vials or ampules to multiple patients or combine leftover contents for later use.
  • IV.H.6. If multidose vials must be used, both the needle or cannula and syringe used to access the multidose vial must be sterile.
  • IV.H.7. Do not keep multidose vials in the immediate patient treatment area and store in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations; discard if sterility is compromised or questionable.
  • IV.H.8. Do not use bags or bottles of intravenous solution as a common source of supply for multiple patients.

Additional Guidance and Educational Materials
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Healthcare Outreach
Public Health has made reasonable efforts to provide accurate translation. However, no computerized translation is perfect and is not intended to replace traditional translation methods. If questions arise concerning the accuracy of the information, please refer to the English edition of the website, which is the official version.
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