In line with the Health and Safety (Sharp Instruments in Healthcare) Regulations 2013 and as agreed at February 2020 Hertfordshire Medicines Management Committee where a safety needle is required by a healthcare worker, this should be provided by the health care workers’ employer. Therefore, healthcare organisations should ensure that they have processes in place to source safety needles for use by their employees. This was due to be published earlier but has been on hold at the request of providers due to COVID pressures.

We appreciate many of you will already have the appropriate system in place, but we hope to provide sufficient notice to allow for the healthcare organisations to purchase safer sharps and distribute to their employees who may be involved in administering insulin and injectable therapies to patients. Therefore, we will be publishing the guidance on 1st May 2022 to allow adequate time for implementation by healthcare organisations.


  • Therefore, if a nurse (e.g. district nurse / nursing home) is injecting the insulin they would be expected to bring their own safety needles.
  • From 1st May the Trust who employ community nurses will provide the safety needles that they require to keep them safe. Care homes will no longer need to request them from GPs and GPs will be advised not to prescribe.

In line with this we will be updating local guidelines as below.

Safety needles:

  • Safety needles should NOT be prescribed on FP10 for use by healthcare professionals and employees; it is the employer’s responsibility to provide them.1,2
  • Safety needles which incorporate automatic safety locks should be used by all healthcare professionals and by all employees in the healthcare sector when administering insulin to patients.
  • Safety needles CAN be prescribed on FP10 for use for patients whose insulin is administered by a non-professional healthcare worker, e.g. carer


Click here for information on prescribing of needles for pre-filled and reusable insulin pens

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