New WHO injection safety guidelines and policy released today urges a shift to single-use smart syringes. Smart syringes prevent the plunger being pulled back after an injection or retract the needle so it cannot be used again.
Transmission of infection through unsafe injections occurs all over the world including the USA. A 2014 study sponsored by WHO showed up to 1.7 million people were infected with hepatitis B, 315000 with hepatitis C and up to 33800 with HIV through an unsafe injection.
WHO also stresses the need to reduce the number of unnecessary injections as a critical way of reducing risk of infection. Although the new needles are more expensive,WHO says the switch would be cheaper than treating the diseases.
Countries are also urged to transition, by 2020, to the exclusive use of the new "smart" syringes, except in few circumstances a smart syringe may interfere with the procedure.