New scheme to dispose of needles

NEEDLES that could cause deadly diseases can now be discarded safely thanks to the launch of a new scheme.The Suffolk Diabetes Initiative and Frontier Medical will distribute containers, which allow for the safe disposal of needles, syringes and lancets to GP practices in Suffolk.

NEEDLES that could cause deadly diseases can now be discarded safely thanks to the launch of a new scheme.

The Suffolk Diabetes Initiative and Frontier Medical will distribute containers, which allow for the safe disposal of needles, syringes and lancets to GP practices in Suffolk.

The Sharps containers will then be made available free of charge to all diabetics, about 3,000 people, in the county.

Adrian Kirkby, blood borne virus project manager, said: "We have launched this initiative to reduce the risk of needlestick injuries to the public and particularly refuse workers.

"There is a real danger that refuse workers can injure themselves on used needles and lancets that have been left in household waste, especially now that recycling is more common.

"If someone receives an injury from a used needle, there is the possibility of serious health problems, such as HIV or Viral Hepatitis. Although the risk may be low, it is traumatic for the person involved, who may have to wait months before receiving the all clear.

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"Sharps containers are the accepted safe method for disposing of medical waste, so we are arranging for every diabetic in Suffolk to receive them free of charge. They can then dispose of their used needles safely and easily and simply exchange full containers for empty ones at their GP practice for safe disposal."

The bins are being distributed via all Suffolk GP surgeries. If you are diabetic and would like to receive a Sharps bin contact your local GP.

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