Safety

Worker HIV treatment changes

OSHA Healthcare Connection, October 7, 2005

The U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) has changed treatment guidelines for workers exposed to HIV.

"Updated U.S. Public Health Service Guidelines for the Management of Occupational Exposures to HIV and Recommendations for Postexposure Prophylaxis" in the September 30 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report includes

  • adherence to HIV postexposure prophylaxis (PEP), when it is indicated for an exposure
  • consultation by an expert in managing exposures
  • follow-up of exposed workers to improve adherence to PEP
  • monitoring for adverse events, including seroconversion

The report emphasizes that clinicians should "consider occupational exposures as urgent medical concerns" to ensure timely postexposure management and administration of HIV PEP.

The OSHA bloodborne pathogens standard, 1910.1030(f)(3)(iv), requires employers to follow current USPHS guidelines.

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