A used syringe pricked my skin when I was clearing out rubbish from a hospital. I was tested for disease but the results came back negative however is compensation for emotional trauma commonly awarded in claims for needle stick injuries at work?
No two claims for needle stick injuries at work are the same, the circumstances of the incident can vary as can the severity and impact of the injury on your personal life. In order to successfully claim compensation for your needle injury you must demonstrate that the injury you suffered was caused by negligence on behalf of your employer.
Usually emotional trauma is part of claims for needle stick injuries at work. In order to claim compensation for psychological injury, you must prove that you suffered trauma as a result of your injury and it must be verified by a psychologist. Therefore if you suffered any anxiety or depression from waiting for the results of the tests for disease, you may be entitled to compensation. To substantiate your claim, it is recommended that you maintain a diary chronicling your life after the accident, include what your day-to-day feelings were as well as any events you missed out on.
You may also be eligible to recover any expenses you incurred as a direct result of your injury through ‘special damages’. These are damages awarded with the aim of returning your finances to what they were had the incident never occurred, therefore any loss of earnings or medical costs incurred due to your accident could potentially be recovered.
It is recommended that you speak with a personal injury solicitor as they will be able to evaluate your claim based on the circumstances surrounding the accident. An experienced solicitor will most likely have dealt with claims for needle stick injuries at work before and will be able to advise if it is worthwhile pursuing a compensation claim, based on the potential amount of compensation you may be awarded.