A one-year-old boy has been treated for hepatitis after he put blood in his mouth from a syringe he is thought to have found near a bin inside a hospital.
The treatment is a precautionary measure because of fears Alfie Jackson may have been exposed to the deadly disease following the incident.
Huddersfield Royal Infirmary has apologised for the blunder but Alfie's mum, Jodie Sykes, 22, said she was 'absolutely petrified' and now has an agonising three-month wait to discover whether or not her son has been infected.
She told the local paper: "We were put in a room as a doctor was examining my partner, Dean Jackson. There was a syringe filled with blood and my son got hold of it.
"We turned around and he put his hand full of blood into his mouth. I screamed 'put it down' and he started crying.
"I was absolutely petrified that he could catch something or get a disease as it was someone else's blood. No-one can tell me if it was clean, if it wasn't diseased or infected.
"With him not even being two yet I'm terrified that it could affect him for the rest of his life."
Jodie, from Golcar, near Huddersfield, also said she was angry that the doctor showed little concern for the impact on Alfie's health last Thursday.
She said: "The doctor went to get a cleaner so we ended up cleaning up Alfie with wet wipes. He didn't say anything about treating him, we were just brushed off.
"It was only the next day when I was speaking to Dean's doctor saying I wasn't very happy about it that he said there was supposed to be a procedure. Within five minutes they took us to Ward 18 for blood tests and treatment for hepatitis.
"He had an injection and he's got to go back in a month. Then in three months we have to go back to see if he's caught anything."
Jodie said she thought the blood filled syringe had been left on top of a needle disposal bin.
"The nurse said it's impossible to get your hand in a needle bin so it can't have been in properly," she said.
Huddersfield Royal Infirmary medical director David Wise said: "This is unacceptable and should never have happened and for that we apologise to the family.
"We have reviewed the environment on the unit and are issuing a reminder to all staff that sharps boxes must be kept in a safe location to make sure that this does not happen to anyone else."
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