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OSHAlert Blog from Quality America

Medication Disposal

With the push to manage waste pharmaceuticals in a more environmentally friendly manner, and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) enforcement taking a step up recently, some medical facilities report tenfold cost increases for managing pharmaceutical waste. Prevention options are helping some...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:51 PM

Test Your Knowledge - High Touch Surfaces

Which of the following high touch surfaces would be the best candidate for a barrier covering? A. Computer keyboard B. Doorknob C. Lightswitch D. Chair arms A. The computer keyboard. Barrier coverings are ideal for surfaces that are touched frequently...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:18 PM

MRSA Prevalence At Least Eight Times Higher Than Previously Estimated

A new Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) survey of US healthcare facilities suggests that nearly 5 percent of patients carry MRSA, putting the national prevalence at between 8 and 11 times higher than previous estimates. The...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:08 PM

Disposing of Mercury Blood Pressure Cuffs

Q: How should we dispose of mercury blood pressure cuffs? Our practice is located in north Florida. A: Place your mercury containing blood pressure cuffs in a container marked "mercury for recycling". Many communities have a recycling drop off at...

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Posted by salholm at 05:07 PM

Disinfectant Contact Times

Q: What do the disinfectant directions mean when they refer to the "contact time" for the cleaner? A: Reading disinfectant labels carefully is important and we're glad you're doing it! The contact time is the length of time the disinfectant...

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Posted by salholm at 11:22 AM

Attention Savvy Safety Specialists

Do you enjoy promoting occupational safety? Are you familiar with OSHA regulations as they apply the medical and dental industry? Can you speak comfortably (and intelligently!) in front of a group? At Quality America we frequently receive calls from medical...

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Posted by kmazza at 04:16 PM

TB or Not TB? That's the Congestion!

What began as an international infection scare coughed up big laughs on late night TV and YouTube: A man thought to have XDR-TB (extensively drug resistant tuberculosis) flew around the world infecting fellow travelers - just to find out later...

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Posted by kmazza at 04:01 PM

CDC Aims to Increase Flu Shots Among Healthcare Workers

A July 13th report from CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices ups the ante regarding healthcare staff flu shots. Since estimates continue to show less than half of healthcare workers (HCWs) receive flu vaccinations, the CDC now recommends healthcare facilities...

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Posted by kmazza at 03:40 PM

Test Your Knowledge - Automatic Sprinkler Systems

How often should preventative maintenance be performed on automatic sprinkler systems? A. Monthly B. At least annually C. Every five years D. Only when a problem surfaces The correct answer is B. Ensure that those responsible for building maintenance perform...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:58 PM

Globe Fire Sprinkler Corporation Recalls Dry Fire Sprinklers

Globe Fire Sprinkler of Standish, Michigan has recalled about 300,000 building fire sprinkler heads after discovering they may fail to operate during a fire. The Globe Model J Series Dry Fire Sprinklers come in ceiling pendent, upright, and sideways wall...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:53 PM

Violent Employee Wrongfully Fired?

Q: I heard on the news about a court case where they said a woman who was fired for violently lashing out at her employer should have instead been accommodated under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Is this story...

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Posted by salholm at 04:55 PM

OSHA Retraining Online?

Q: I was at the Mohawk Expo OSHA Training Seminar in Verona NY in May and Dr. Dunn said to contact her with questions. I need information regarding annual training for bloodborne pathogens, I have a wonderful program that covers...

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Posted by salholm at 03:33 PM

Obtain OSHA Inspection Report?

Q: We have a physician applying to our healthplan who states that OSHA conducted an investigation of his practice as a result of a complaint. Are we able to get any kind of report regarding the investigation? A: Yes, you...

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Posted by salholm at 12:23 PM

Employees Required to Have Breaks?

Q: Is there a law about breaks in the work place for an 8-hour day worked? I'm the manager of an Obstetrics and Gynecology practice in Dallas, Texas. A: Whether breaks must be provided is a matter of individual state...

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Posted by salholm at 10:18 AM

Test Your Knowledge - TB Risk Assessment

Which category no longer exists on the annual TB risk assessment? A. Low risk B. Medium risk C. High risk D. Potential ongoing transmission C. The high risk category was eliminated in the latest (2005) CDC TB Guidelines. The five...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:53 PM

Aging Workforce Implications for Healthcare

Concerns over the aging RN workforce have been recognized for many years. Yet, the nursing workforce isn't the only area where aging is having an impact. Physicians, laboratory technicians and technologists, and respiratory therapists are experiencing similar trends Many have...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:47 PM

First Aid Requirements

Q: Do medical employers have to follow OSHA's 29 CFR 1910.151 first aid requirements? A: "OSHA's First Aid Standard does not provide an exemption for medical practices. However, with highly trained staff it should be fairly easy for a medical...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:30 PM

Health and Safety Concerns Key as Nurses Decide Where to Work

According to an April 2007 study conducted nationwide, for 65 percent of nurses health and safety concerns play a key role in determining the specific area in which they choose to work and their decision to continue practicing. The top...

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Posted by kmazza at 02:00 PM


 

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