Gloves should always be worn during phlebotomy to reduce the incidence of blood contamination of hands. However, gloves cannot prevent penetrating injuries caused by needles or other sharp instruments. Therefore gloves should always be available to laboratory health care workers conducting phlebotomy. A fresh pair of gloves should be used for each patient.
Gloves are particularly important in the following situations:
For performing phlebotomy when the worker has cuts, scratches or other breaks in the skin (after covering the cuts with elastoplasts).
Where the worker judges that hand contamination with blood may occur e.g. on an uncooperative patient
When performing finger or heal prick on infants and children
Use disposable, single-use blood collection safety sets (safety needles, vacuum tubes and holders) wherever possible. Where syringes and needles have to be used, never use the two-handed method to re-cap the needle after collection. Remove the needles from the syringe before dispensing blood into tubes.