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Ten years later, progress has been made to protect healthcare workers from needlestick injuries. The turning point occurred two years ago when two veteran newspaper reporters were approached and successfully pitched a needlestick story to their editor. Bill Carlsen and Ren Holding then dedicated Scientific software the next six months of their working lives to uncovering the facts. This series, which ran the week of April 13, 1998 in the San Francisco Chronicle (see <>), resulted in a Pultizer Prize nomination. Moved by what she read, California State Assemblywoman Carole Migden introduced the nation's first safer needle legislation, which was signed by former Gov. Wilson after a massive mathlab grassroots lobbying effort by more than 1,000 healthcare workers from across the state.

On the heels of this victory, a coalition of SEIU locals, other unions and organizations have been working to pass laws in all 50 states. As of today, the coalition has succeeded in enacting nine additional states safer needle laws (Georgia, Iowa, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia) with three more states passing bills that now await their governors' signatures (Alaska, New Hampshire and Ohio). An equal number of states are currently continuing to consider such legislation.

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