CDC and the Food and Drug Administration have issued a joint warning against the reuse of fingerstick and point-of-care (POC) blood testing devices. The agencies report they have documented an increasing number of blood-borne infections, particularly hepatitis B virus, transmitted through the devices in the past 10 to 15 years.
The agencies' statements include the following recommendations:
- Fingerstick devices should never be used on more than one person.
- Single-use, auto-disable fingerstick devices should be used for assisted monitoring of blood glucose.
- Whenever possible, POC blood testing devices like glucose meters should be used on one patient only and not shared. If it is not possible to dedicate one meter to each patient, the devices should be properly cleaned and disinfected after each use per the manufacturer's instructions.
- Regardless of the type of blood collection device used, health care personnel should change gloves between patients.
For more information, visit CDC at www.cdc.gov/injectionsafety/Fingerstick-DevicesBGM.html and FDA at www.fda.gov/MedicalDevices/Safety/AlertsandNotices/ucm224025.htm.
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