Safety

Study: Updated hazardous drug list prompts an internal evaluation

OSHA Healthcare Connection, October 23, 2012

NIOSH adds 26 new drugs to its hazardous drugs list, leaving facilities to implement processes and policies for employee protection

The Center for Disease Control's (CDC)'s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) updated its "List of Antineoplastic and Other Hazardous Drugs in Healthcare Settings" in July, adding 26 new drugs to the 2010 list. These drugs were added by NIOSH because they pose an occupational threat through various routes of exposure to workers, including doctors, nurses, and pharmacists.Facilities may be slightly surprised to see some drugs on the list, such as paroxetine and other SSRI antipsychotics, says Cynthia Reilly, BS Pharm, director of practice development at the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) in Bethesda, Md.

"People just might not be as familiar with drugs like that, and it's worth pointing out that there are some drugs they may not have anticipated on the list," she says.

Some of the drug additions are a result of new FDA warnings on existing drugs, including labeling changes to the pregnancy and lactation section; new information on increased cancer risks; and new data on kidney and liver toxicities.

Source: Excerpted from Hospital Safety Center, November 2012.

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