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Exposure to Blood or Body Fluids

UTHSC College of Medicine - Chattanooga Exposure/Needle Stick Protocol for Medical and PA Students

  1. If an exposure/needle stick occurs, the student must notify his/her Supervising Faculty Member and/or Clerkship/Course Director immediately.

  2. Secondarily, the student will seek assistance from the Head Nurse in the area where the exposure occurred or the Erlanger House Supervisor (423.778.6168) to assist in completing an Erlanger Exposure Form for Non-Employees. This form must be sent/given to the Erlanger Infection Prevention and Erlanger ExpressCare/Employee Health.
        • To reach the House Supervisor/Erlanger Administrator On-Call, call 423.778.6168. If there is no answer, please call the Erlanger Operator at 423.778.7000 and ask the operator to the House Supervisor.
  1. The student should also notify the UT College of Medicine Chattanooga Office of Undergraduate (Student) Medical Education as soon as the student reports the exposure by calling 423.778.7442 (leave message if after hours) AND emailing and
  1. The Nursing Supervisor, Administrator On-Call, or Erlanger Employee Health personnel is authorized to order baseline tests per Erlanger Health protocol (g., HIV, Hepatitis panel, etc.) on the student as well as the source patient at no charge to either the student or the patient. Erlanger Health will cover all initial evaluation (lab draw, lab processing/resulting, etc.) costs related to the exposure.
        • The student may be directed to report to the Emergency Department for screening or treatment if the exposure event occurs between 4:00 pm and 8:30 am. Erlanger Employee Health Office opens at 9:00 am. If the source patient is known to be positive for HIV, Hepatitis the Nursing Supervisor may direct immediate treatment as per Erlanger Health Exposure Protocol.
        • Lab reports will be sent to the Erlanger Employee Health Office when resulted.
        • If the student is directed to report to Erlanger Employee Health or the Emergency Department, the student should bring a copy of the Erlanger Exposure form with them.
  1. Follow-up care recommendations will be given to the Student by Erlanger Employee Health once all lab reports are reviewed.
        • The UTHSC-COM-Chattanooga Student will be financially responsible for any necessary follow-up care resulting from the exposure event once initial lab evaluation is completed. This care will be coordinated between UTHSC Student Health Services in Memphis, Erlanger Employee Health, Erlanger Infection Prevention, and the UTHSC College of Medicine administrative offices.
        •  The UTHSC-COM-Chattanooga student will need to email for HEPC results 3 – 5 days post exposure.
  1. Important Contact Numbers and Locations:

Erlanger ExpressCare - Downtown and Employee Health Office is located at:
325 Market Street, Suite 102
Chattanooga, TN  37402
Phone:  423.541.5122 or 423.778.4800.

Feb 26, 2024