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Bloodborne pathogens are pathogenic microorganisms that are present in human blood and bodily fluids and can cause disease in humans. These pathogens include, but are not limited to, hepatitis B virus (HBV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) – the virus which causes AIDS.
To protect yourself, always assume that any blood or bodily fluid you come across is infected. Do not handle any material, which is visibly contaminated with blood, or other potentially infectious materials unless you have been properly trained and are using appropriate personal protective equipment, such as gloves.
Do not discard broken glass, hypodermic needles, or other sharp objects in normal waste containers. Special precautions need to be taken to ensure that sharp objects are disposed of in impervious, puncture resistant, rigid containers to eliminate the hazard of physical injury.
Materials contaminated with blood or bodily fluids, human or animal tissues, or other potential infectious/medical waste must be disposed of according to State and Federal Regulations.
For further information on bloodborne pathogens, see the University's Bloodborne Pathogens Program or contact the Office of Safety at 701-777-3341.