Q&A: Break room sink and instrument decontamination

OSHA Healthcare Connection, July 7, 2009

Q: Is it OK to use the break room sink for soaking and decontaminating instruments?

A: Unless you are going to make the break room off limits while the described activity occurs, this would be a clear violation of the bloodborne pathogen standard that prohibits eating and drinking in areas where bloodborne exposure could occur (1910.1030[d][2][ix]).

It would be best to find a different area for instrument decontamination.

For more insight into this dilemma, see “No thank you, I am not that thirsty” on the OSHA Healthcare Advisor.