Safety

Update your OSHA safety manual: PPE clarification, sharps container placement, and dental decontamination guideline

OSHA Watch, March 1, 2009

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This month, Quality America focuses on the new OSHA personal protective equipment (PPE) clarification, sharps disposal container placement, and decontaminating environmental surfaces in dental practices. OSHA reemphasizes PPE rule It?s a cumbersome title?Clarification of Employers? Duty to Provide Personal Protective Equipment and Train Each Employee?but healthcare facilities used to be cited and fined by OSHA on a per-employer basis for violating the PPE standard (1910.132). Now, OSHA makes it clear that PPE violations can be issued on a per-employee basis. This applies not only for the PPE standard but for other standards having PPE compliance components, such as respiratory protection and bloodborne pathogens. For example, OSHA has revised section g(2)(i) of the bloodborne pathogens standard to explicitly state that training for PPE must be provided for each employee in a facility covered under that standard. You are probably already doing this, but to make sure your OSHA Safety Program manual is consistent with the clarification, effective January 12, this issue includes updates on the changes to the bloodborne pathogens and hazard communication tabs. The hazard communication tab broadly addresses PPE provisions and training for hazardous chemicals and drugs. A new checklist for PPE for bloodborne pathogens is also provided in the Record and Forms tab.

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