Physician Practice

The safety interpretation

Medical Environment Update, October 1, 2018

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Editor’s note: In this guest column, Dan Scungio, MT(ASCP), SLS, laboratory safety officer for Sentara Healthcare, a multihospital system in Virginia, and otherwise known as “Dan, the Lab Safety Man,” discusses the important issues that affect your job every day.

When hospitals were placed on OSHA’s list of high-risk workplaces, no one had to ask why. OSHA adjusts that list based on the number of injuries that occur on the job each year in specific industries, and the rising number of hospital incidents over a couple of years made the regulatory agency take notice. OSHA’s purpose, after all, is to ensure the protection of employees in unsafe working conditions. Being placed on the high-risk workplace list simply means that hospitals are now more frequently going to be inspected by OSHA without cause. That means labs across the nation will be visited as well—and many have been.

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