I believe it is primarily due to better internal reporting procedures within government departments and privately-owned firms, as well as the subsequent identification of this very specific risk that we at BitePRO® Bite Resistant Clothing can see a clear increase in the demand for bite resistant clothing.
The second reason why we can witness such increase in demand is the wider media coverage of incidents of health care or educational professionals being bitten.
The case of Australia based Jessica Anderson who was bitten by one of her patients in a psychiatric hospital in Melbourne made the headlines in 2017 (view report) but many others have spoken up since, highlighting the immense physical pain and sometimes long-lasting psychological distress after being bitten by another human.
It is a well-known fact that working within the mental health facilities, special educational needs schools and other public facing sectors comes with a certain risk. However, it is without question that these environments would be much safer places to work if the appropriate protection, such as bite resistant clothing was used, especially if previous incidents of biting, scratching or pinching have been reported and recorded.
The consequence of being bitten is not simply the level of pain one might experience, and neither the cosmetic issue of any potential scars.
A bite related injury can become infected and contaminated with pathogens. Human bites can also lead to infections because of the number of bacteria and viruses in a human mouth. Transmissions of viruses, such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C or HIV are as well a real possibility.
BitePRO® Bite Resistant Clothing - Research & Additional Information
Certain wounds may require stitches, such as those on the face, and surgery may be necessary if there’s damage to a tendon or joint. Following a human bite, the risk of bacterial infection is greater than the risk of BBV (blood-borne viruses) infection. More than 42 different species of bacteria have been isolated in the human mouth and up to 190 when gingivitis or periodontitis are present.
The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology states that bite injuries represent 1% of all emergency department admissions in the United States (view report).
Being fully aware of the potential risk and realistic consequences, one must look at all possible options to help individuals at risk of being bitten by another human, and the existence and benefits of bite resistant clothing and arm guards cannot be ignored.
According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, human bite wounds cause about one-third of all hand infections (view report).
For all those reasons (including the legal and financial consequences faced by those employers who do not looking after their staff appropriately), the personal safety of public facing professionals is now being looked at more seriously, aiming to effectively reduce the risk of injuries and stress.
Expert Witness and Specialist Training Provider Joanne Caffrey has over 30 years’ experience advising professionals in custody settings, education, care, and mental health on managing challenging behaviours. Her message is clear: staff do not have to accept that it’s their job to be bitten or scratched. As an Expert Witness, Joanne is engaged on two-three new legal cases per month where either staff or service users are injured, sometimes fatally, as a result of failures to manage foreseeable risk with complex and challenging behaviours. She highlights the following:
“Staff dealing with challenging behaviour must be protected under both the Health and Safety at Work Act and s safeguarding duties to the client. This includes considering personal protective equipment (PPE). If the risk assessment includes past incidents and tendencies for biting, pinching, grabbing or scratching, then the employer must supply appropriate bite resistant arm guards.”
BitePRO® Bite Resistant Clothing and Arm Guards are a types of PPE primarily designed to protect mental health care professionals as well as educational professionals working with vulnerable children displaying learning disabilities and/or challenging behaviour.
Our highly acclaimed protective garments are made from our very own high performance BitePRO® fabric , preventing teeth from breaking the skin, effectively reducing the risks of serious injury and infection associated with human bites.
Please read the following feedback:
Sherria L. Carel, Severe-Profound Educator for Bridge Creek Public Schools in Bridge Creek:
"…for 3 1/2 years we were getting injured at least twice a week and were looking at other placement for this student. Now, I feel confident that we can complete his education process and assist family in continuing behaviour management safely as well. As for the BitePRO® jackets, I am astoundingly impressed. On a scale from 1 to 5, this product receives a 10! The bite resistant clothing has also assisted in the confidence and safety of my aides who deal with some other students who are not so aggressive but can be. Your products delivered every aspect as they advertised, and my team and I are safer for them. Thank you for such a great product not only are they protective but stylish as well to not draw attention to the students we are working with in our High School."
David Watts, Director of Risk and Safety of Priory Group, one of the UK’s leading and most respected provider of mental health care clinics stated:
“Whilst we are in the fortunate position to only need to use BitePRO® bite resistant clothing and arm guards in very rare circumstances, when it has been used, we have received very favourable feedback. I am certain that the use of this equipment has helped to advert serious incidents and serious injury.”
In case you have any question in regards to this subject, please be so kind and comment on my article and/or please contact us.