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What's Wrong Here?

Can you find the phlebotomy error being committed in this image?

by Dennis Ernst • September 07, 2020


chemo patient getting her blood drawn

The picture I'm choosing for your scrutiny shows a patient being drawn by a healthcare worker with unprotected arms. OSHA does not specifically mandate arms to be fully covered when drawing blood samples unless the employer determines it to pose a risk of exposure. However, in the June 2009 issue of Phlebotomy Today we published the results of a survey that showed the risk is worth considering.  Approximately 134 of the 180 survey participants (74%) reported one or more incidents of blood splatter beyond the wrist when performing venipuncture procedures. Those who reported splatter beyond the hand area averaged 6.9 occurrences per person. For that reason, we consider the right to "bear arms" not to be part of anyone's constitution if phlebotomy is one of their responsibilities. 

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