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HIV/Blood Borne Pathogens and Athletic Activity

— National Association for Sport and Physical Education
Updated on Jul 26, 2007

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed universal precautions to follow when exposed to blood and/or bodily fluids, especially blood borne pathogens such as HIV and Hepatitis B. The precaution guidelines should be followed when treating any kind of open skin wound such as an abrasion or blister to items that come in contact with blood or bodily fluid such as a mouthpiece or a bloodied jersey. Visit the OSHA website for more information: http://www.osha.gov

Recommendations include the following:

  1. Remove any athlete with active bleeding from participation.
  2. Use One-Time Use Latex Gloves and appropriate barriers (i.e., eye protection; masks, gowns) when treating anything exposed to blood or bodily fluids.
  3. Treat and Cover ALL Open Wounds with a dressing that is fixed in place.
  4. Discard gloves and all items used to treat the wound in an appropriate Biohazard container.
  5. Wash hands after removing gloves and other items used during treatment.
  6. If hands or skin comes in contact with blood or other bodily fluids, wash the area immediately with soap and water or other anti-germicidal agents.
  7. Clothing saturated with blood should be removed, separated from other laundry, and bagged in an appropriate biohazard bag. Contaminated laundry should be washed in HOT water for 25 minutes using a detergent that deactivates potential HIV/Hepatitis B Viruses.
  8. If player is deemed ready to return to play after treatment, be sure that there is no trace of blood on the uniform or player. Provide a clean uniform if blood or fluids are present on existing uniform.

Suggested Supplies and First Aid Kit Equipment:

  1. Chlorine Solution Spray Bottle: All contaminated surfaces must be cleaned immediately with a bleach/water solution (one part bleach to ten parts water – 1:10) or with an approved disinfectant.
  2. Disposable paper towels and gauze pads
  3. Hydrogen peroxide or other antiseptic
  4. Disposable latex gloves
  5. Mask and face shields for CPR; gowns
  6. Red Biohazard bags for proper disposal of wastes
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