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OSHAlert Blog from Quality America

Reusing Disposables... In The Garden!

Q: I have a situation that has occurred at my surgery center. One of my nurses has taken a disposable item used in shoulder surgery and found another use for the item. This was not approved for her to do....

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Posted by salholm at 08:58 AM

Physician Office Policies

Q: We manage some physician offices and also have some hospital owned physician offices. My questions are: 1. Should there be any difference in their Infection Control, Employee Health, etc., policies? 2. Should the office policies be the same as...

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Posted by salholm at 01:29 PM

Goggles Required for Blood Draw?

Q: Are goggles required when drawing a patient's blood? A: Eye protection, and protection for the nose and mouth, are required when droplets of blood or other potentially infectious materials may splash or spray during a procedure. Usually, splashes and...

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Posted by salholm at 01:14 PM

Employee Hospitalization in Alaska

Q: We attended your teleconference, Administering your OSHA Program. During the program you mentioned that a facility must contact OSHA if three or more employees are hospitalized. I heard that here in Alaska OSHA must be contacted if there is...

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Posted by salholm at 11:23 AM

Cold Sterilization OSHA Standards

Q: We've used an autoclave for a long time and it now needs replacing. We are looking into other effective methods for sterilization. Could you provide some information? A: High-level disinfectants, such as glutaraldehyde, kill most microbes except bacterial spores....

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Posted by salholm at 03:14 PM

Posters Required in Iowa?

Q: What needs to be posted in the general area for notices? We currently have information about minimum wage, polygraph tests from the US Department of Labor as well as from the Iowa division of labor. What is mandated? We...

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Posted by salholm at 02:46 PM

Handwashing with Alcohol-Based Rubs?

Q: I have a question about a statement made in the Quality America OSHA Safety Program Manual. It says in Tab 5 that alcohol-based waterless antiseptic agents can be used for routine decontamination in all clinical situations when hands are...

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Posted by salholm at 09:01 AM

Cover Your Cough Poster

Q: Where can I get the CDC's Cover Your Cough poster to print off on our color printer? I am looking for the one that is on page 6-8 of your OSHA Safety Program Manual. A: Download the poster from...

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Posted by salholm at 09:40 AM

Organizing MSDS?

Q: I am trying to standardize and simplify the organization of the MSDS manuals in our organization. How do you suggest we organize the MSDS? The Master Hazardous Substance list suggests by the chemical name. Many products that we use...

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Posted by salholm at 02:50 PM

PPE for High-level Disinfectants

Q: What type of gloves should be worn when working with glutaraldehyde-based, high-level disinfectants for minor handling, such as removing instruments, and for major handling, such as cleaning instruments? A: In both of these situations, a utility-type glove, such as...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:43 PM

Vaccination Schedule

Q: How stringent are the time frames for administering the Hepatitis B vaccine to workers? I know the vaccine schedule of initial dose, then one-month and six-month dose. But employee vacations and sick leave may prevent us from adhering strictly...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:42 PM

Evacuation Plans

Q: We were told that OSHA requires an evacuation plan. This seems like overkill for our three-person office. We all know how to get out of the building! A: OSHA requires any facility with 10 or more employees to have...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:40 PM

All Body Materials Infectious?

Q: In OSHA's list of potentially infectious materials, urine and some other body fluids are not listed. The hospital where I worked previously considered all body fluids to be infectious. Are there two separate OSHA standards, one for hospitals and...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:39 PM

Stay Complaint in Crowded Facility?

Q: We've outgrown our current building and plan to relocate to a larger facility next year. In the meantime, space is at a minimum and, in some areas, boxes and other things are stacked from floor to ceiling. Any suggestions...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:38 PM

Hand Creams with Latex Gloves?

Q: We've heard that oil-based hand creams should not be used when wearing latex gloves. In our practice, we use latex gloves many times each day. Can you please elaborate on exactly what substances we should use to keep...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:37 PM

Space Heaters at Work

Q: One of our employees says she is always cold and has brought her space heater to work. She keeps it under her desk. Is this an OSHA violation? A: The 1997 Life Safety Code (LSC), under paragraphs 12/13-7.7, prohibits...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:35 PM

Sequence for Doffing PPE

Q: I disagree with your training tips on removing PPE equipment as stated in your July/August 2006 OSHA Watch issue. We have always been taught to remove the gown first. If you remove the gloves first, contaminates from the gown...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:18 PM

Strategies for Reducing Costs

Q: I was amazed when our practice administrator showed me how much it costs to dispose of our infectious waste in our seven-physician practice. Any ideas on how to cut costs in this area? A: You pay about five times...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:11 PM

Disposing of Epinephrine

NOTE: THIS POST HAS GOOD REFERENCE INFORMATION BUT IS NOT CURRENT. UPDATED INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE HERE. Q: When we recently had our ACLS training the trainer said there are new rules for disposing of epinephrine. Can you tell me about...

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Posted by salholm at 11:54 AM

Online Dental OSHA Training Course

Quality America's Online Training Center has added dental specific OSHA training. The course, Dental OSHA Training, may be used by dental facilities for both initial training and OSHA annual retraining. Check out Quality America's Online Training Center Demo course to...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:30 PM

Test Your Knowledge - TB Transmission

Which if the following procedures are considered high risk for tuberculosis transmission? A. Drawing blood B. Urine Testing C. Aerosolized administration of medication D. Suture removal The correct answer is C. The aerosolized administration of medication is a procedure that...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:24 PM

New Partnerships: American College of Physicians and American Professional Practice Association

Quality America is proud to work closely with a number of professional organizations and associations. Longtime partners include the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) and the Professional Association of Health Care Office Managers (PAHCOM); we're excited to announce recent agreements...

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Posted by kmazza at 12:16 PM

Defibtech Announces Class I Recall

Defibtech LLC Guilford, CT is initiating a voluntary worldwide recall of the Lifeline AED® and ReviveR AED™ (semi-automatic external defibrillators). This recall affects all Lifeline and ReviveR AEDs with software versions 2.002 and earlier. The self-test software for these devices...

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Posted by kmazza at 11:51 AM

Actions Following Indeterminate Titer Results

Q: I have a question about hep b immunity. The titer said indeterminate and the HB antibody quantitative was 5.5 mIU/mL. What would you suggest? A: Although your question did not state it, I assume that this is the titer...

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Posted by salholm at 10:23 AM

Does OSHA Regulate Hairstyles?

Q: I work in an Ophthalmology medical office and have been told I must wear my hair up due to OSHA regulations. I wanted to know if that was true since in my entire career in Ophthalmology I have never...

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Posted by salholm at 08:39 AM

Testing Employee After BBP Exposure

Q: We had a needlestick employee exposure yesterday. We obtained the source patient's blood for testing, including a STAT Rapid HIV test. What about the employee's baseline blood sample? How many hours post-exposure must this blood draw occur by? A:...

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Posted by salholm at 09:45 AM

Which Vaccinations?

Q: I am having problems with what shots our employer must give us as part of OSHA. For example: flu, tetanus, hep B? If you could help I would appreciate it. A: Hepatitis B vaccination MUST be offered to employees...

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Posted by salholm at 02:20 PM

What Are The Actual Requirements Regarding TB?

Q: What is the bottom line about following the CDC's TB guidelines? How "required" is this by OSHA? A: Even though the TB standard was rescinded, OSHA has since issued citations related to TB under the General Duty Clause: Each...

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Posted by salholm at 12:46 PM

How Long Does Hep B Vaccination Last?

Q: We have an employee who received the complete series of 3 shots (for HBV) many years ago. Is a booster needed? A: Boosters are not called for as the series is considered to confer immunity indefinitely. However, some individuals...

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Posted by salholm at 12:21 PM


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