Needle Sticks, Sharps and

Bloodborne Pathogen Exposures


If you are an employee who has experienced a bloodborne pathogen exposure (e.g., needle stick, sharp injury, or splash) and would like to speak with someone for personal assistance, please follow the guidelines below:

  • During Business Hours, Monday - Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (closed for lunch from 12 - 1 p.m.), call the Employee Health Clinic at 409-747-9172
  • After Hours, Weekends and Holidays, call the Clinical Operations Administrator (COA) at 409-392-5491 (COA pager: 409-643-2801) 
  • For self-service, please follow the instructions below. Should you have questions after receiving treatment, please contact Employee Health.

If you are a student who has experienced a bloodborne pathogen exposure (e.g., needle stick, sharp injury, or splash) and would like to speak with someone for personal assistance, call Student Health at 409-747-9508 during business hours (Monday - Friday 7:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.). 

For self-service, please follow the instructions below. Should you have questions after receiving treatment, please contact Student Health.

UTMB Employee Health Clinics

UTMB Health Eye Center, Galveston
700 University Blvd., Suite 3.420
Galveston, TX 77550

Victory Lakes Town Center
2660 Gulf Frwy, South
Entrance A, Suite 1.1430
League City, TX 77573

Phone: 409-747-9172
Fax: 409-747-9182

Hours: Monday - Friday 
7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

UTMB Student Health Clinic

Lee Hage Jamail
Student Center - 3rd Flr.
301 University Blvd.
Galveston, Texas

Phone: (409) 747-9508
Fax: (409) 747-9330

Hours: Monday - Friday 
7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.


1) If you are STUCK:

If you are stuck by a needle or other sharp or you get blood or other potentially infectious materials in your eyes, nose, mouth, or on broken skin:

1. Wash needle sticks and cuts with soap and water.
2. Flush splashes to the nose, mouth, or skin with water.
3. Irrigate eyes with clean water, saline, or sterile irrigant.

2) Report the incident immediately to your supervisor or preceptor.


3) Your supervisor/preceptor (or their delegate) should obtain source blood: one (1) yellow-top tube with SOURCE labels on tube.

Take the source sample with you to treatment for evaluation. Please be sure the source's samples are properly labeled with the source's identifiers to prevent any delays in the lab!

4) Seek evaluation within 4 hours:

Seek evaluation within 4 hours to up to 72 hours after exposure. Please report to the Employee Health Clinic or Student Health Center during business hours (see top of this webpage for details). You may also report to a UTMB Emergency Room for evaluation (see locations below). 

• Galveston Campus Emergency Room: 901 Harborside Drive
• League City Campus: 2240 Gulf Freeway South
• Angleton Danbury Campus: 132 East Hospital Drive
• Clear Lake Campus: 200 Blossom Street

If you are in a remote location, please refer to your agency-specific policy. Information should be posted in designated clinics to inform staff on the locations of kits and general processes for off campus employee exposures.

You should be registered as an “Employee/Student Health Injury” so you are not billed for your visit. Should you receive a bill for care related to your sharps injury, please contact the Employee Health Clinic or Student Health Clinic. Note: Students should report to Student Health for evaluation during business hours.
• Your blood will be drawn and sent to the Core Laboratory in Galveston for baseline testing.

• HIV testing will be performed on-site for the source specimen. Confirmatory testing (HCV Antibody, HBs Antigen, and HBC Antibody) will be performed at the Core Laboratory in Galveston.

• Click here to access the Laboratory Requisition Form (PDF) to be used by the exposure evaluating personnel in Emergency Department or Employee/Student Health Clinics.

5) Results:

  • Your provider will receive the HIV results of the source within approximately 60 minutes if the test is collected in a UTMB ER. Results may take up to 24 hours if test is collected in a non-UTMB Emergency Room.
  • If source is negative for HIV, no prophylaxis will be required (prophylaxis can be delayed up to 72 hours post-exposure while waiting for results).
  • If source is positive for HIV or the source sample is unavailable, the first dose of prophylaxis will be immediately administered to you.
  • The remainder of the prophylaxis prescription will be issued by the Employee Health Clinic or the ordering provider and should be filled at a UTMB pharmacy (when possible) to assure you receive the prescription at no cost. (Additionally, most local pharmacies may not have the medication in stock.) You must have a valid prescription signed by a physician, physician’s assistant, or nurse practitioner.
  • Click here to view Medication Schedule.

6) Action Items:

NOTE: The Employee Health Clinic /Student Health Clinic must maintain separate and confidential medical records related to employee injuries. You have the right to access relevant exposure and medical records and to know how OSHA's standard covers you if you have been exposed to toxic substances or harmful physical agents.

• Students: Contact Student Health

7) Follow-up:

Employee Health/Student Health clinicians will review the source patient and employee/student test results. They will provide counseling, prophylaxis, or vaccination as indicated, and instructions for any additional follow-up testing or assessment by a specialist.

8) Additional Contact Information:

Healthcare Epidemiology
  • Dr. Janak Patel – Medical Director,
Employee Health
  • Kathleen O'Neill – Director, Employee & Occupational Health, 
Student Health
  • Akinpelu Olawunmi Abiodun (Abi) – UTMB Student Health and Counseling Director,