Disease Management

Safe Injection practices during Blood Glucose Monitoring and Insulin Administration

Dr Sittana Elshafie/ Consultant Clinical Microbiologist
Aspetar
17 April, 2018

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~Diabetes mellitus is common among Qatari population. As such monitoring of blood glucose levels is frequently performed at home to guide therapy for persons with diabetes.
 Blood glucose monitoring and insulin administration can be accomplished in two ways: self-monitoring of blood glucose and insulin administration, where the individual performs all steps of the testing and insulin administration themselves, and assisted monitoring of blood glucose and insulin administration, where another person assists with or performs testing and insulin administration for an individual.
 The following are infection control recommendations that anyone who performs or assists with blood glucose monitoring and /or insulin administration should review to assure they are not placing themselves or persons in their care at risk.


1. Fingerstick Devices
Fingerstick devices, also called lancing devices, are devices that are used to prick the skin and obtain drops of blood for testing.  There are two main types of Fingerstick devices: those that are designed for reuse on a single person and those that are disposable and for single-use.

If Reusable Devices are used, it should only be by individual persons using these devices for self-monitoring of blood glucose.

Single-use, disposable Fingerstick devices are devices that are disposable and prevent reuse through an auto-disabling feature.  In settings where assisted monitoring of blood glucose is performed, single-use, auto-disabling Fingerstick devices should be used.
 
Fingerstick devices should never be used for more than one person.

 

2. Blood Glucose Meters:
Blood glucose meters are devices that measure blood glucose levels.

Whenever possible, blood glucose meters should be assigned to an individual person and not be shared.
 
If blood glucose meters must be shared, the device should be cleaned and disinfected after every use, per manufacturer’s instructions, to prevent carry-over of blood and infectious agents.  If the manufacturer does not specify how the device should be cleaned and disinfected then it should not be shared.
 
If shared, blood glucose meters should be cleaned and disinfected after every use.

 

3. Insulin Administration:
 Insulin can be administered using an insulin pen that is designed for reuse on a single patient.  It can also be administered using a needle and syringe after drawing up contents from an insulin vial.

Insulin Pens are designed to be safe for a single person to use a single pen multiple times, with a new needle for each injection.
     Insulin pens should never be used for more than one person.

Insulin Vials:  Multi-dose vials of insulin should be dedicated to a single
person whenever possible.  Insulin vials should always be entered with a      new needle and new syringe.  Needles and syringes should never be used to administer insulin to more than one person and should be disposed of immediately after use in an approved sharps container.
Injection equipment (e.g., insulin pens, needles and syringes) should never be used for more than one person    

4. General Rules:
a. Wash hands with soap and water or use an alcohol based hand rub before and after blood glucose monitoring and insulin administration.
b. If you are performing blood glucose monitoring to another person use gloves; wash hands before and after using gloves
c. Make sure you are well trained by your healthcare provider before glucose monitoring or insulin administration to yourself or to others.
d. Be sure you are vaccinated against Hepatitis B virus.
e. Regularly visit your doctor for advice and follow up

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