Archive for: December, 2008

Ask the Expert—Safety needles in small healthcare facilities

By: December 31st, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: Just where does it say that we have to use safety needles? We are opening a new medical practice and there is disagreement on this.

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Market share and legislation reduce needlesticks

By: December 30th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

It appears that years of advocacy by needlestick prevention experts, good ol’ capitalism, and, yes, a little bit of heavy-handed regulation by the government, has made it safer in protecting healthcare workers from contracting life-altering or even life-threatening infections such as HIV, HBV, or HCV.

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Poll Question: Sharps prevention technology

By: December 29th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

A new study published by the University of Virginia International Healthcare Worker Safety Center in the December 8, 2008, Journal of Infection and Public Health, found that U.S. healthcare workers are now significantly safer from needlestick injuries. Much of the credit goes to the innovation of safety engineered devices.

However, the study also found that nonhospital settings such as clinics, private doctors’ and dentists’ offices, long-term care facilities, and freestanding laboratories have an adoption rate 25-35% below hospitals.

Which leads us to the poll question of the week: How has your facility reacted in adopting safety-engineered devices?


Quizzes by Quibblo.com

Note: Adobe Flash Player is required to view this poll. To download the latest version, click here.

Ask the Expert—Evacuation plan for a small facility

By: December 26th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: Must we have an evacuation plan even if we have only a few employees?

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Chemical Hygiene Standard v. Hazard Communication

By: December 24th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

In 1987 OSHA created the Hazard Communication (HC) standard, which required all industries to take measures ensuring employee safety regarding hazardous chemicals.

But the standard failed to take into account the number of chemicals present in laboratories, which store hundreds of chemicals, often in small quantities. In some cases, the standard forced these labs to have as many as 900 MSDS forms on hand.

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Poll Question: OSHA PPE ruling

By: December 22nd, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

On December 12, OSHA released their final ruling on training employees regarding PPE use. The new rule clarifies OSHA standards, stating that each employee that is not in compliance with the PPE standard would be treated as separate violations.

Will this new ruling have an effect on your facility?


Quizzes by Quibblo.com

Note: Adobe Flash Player is required to view this poll. To download the latest version, click here.

Ask the expert—Gloves and flu shots

By: December 19th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: Does OSHA require healthcare workers to wear gloves when giving flu shots?

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Being ergonomically conscious

By: December 18th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Ergonomics continues to be an issue that affects millions of workers, particularly in the healthcare profession, despite the fact that ergonomic injuries are the most expensive and easiest to prevent. If you don’t believe it, just look at the statistics.

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are the most common injury due to poor ergonomics, and healthcare workers are particularly susceptible. In 2007, nursing aides, orderlies and attendants ranked second only to laborers and material workers in the number of MSD cases, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This demographic also had a MSD rate of 252 cases per 10,000 workers, more than seven times the national MSD average for all occupations.

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Ask the Expert—Postvaccination testing

By: December 17th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: After employees have the hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination, when should they be tested for immunity and which test should be ordered?

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Budget cuts threaten emergency preparedness

By: December 16th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

You’ve no doubt heard about the unemployment rate, the bank bailouts, and most recently the trouble in Detroit with the auto industry. Every day headlines reveal another portion of the U.S. sucker punched by the economy.

Now you’re going to hear about some of the jabs the economy has thrown at the public health system, particularly the programs devoted to emergency management.

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Poll question: Where are budget cuts hitting your safety and health programs?

By: December 15th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

This month Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) released the sixth annual Ready or Not? Protecting the Public’s Health from Diseases, Disasters, and Bioterrorism. The report concluded emergency preparedness in the U.S. is at risk because of the economy. State and federal funding are down, and healthcare facilities are being forced to compensate by making budget cuts.

Not that we want to start the week on a low note, but we’re interested to know which part of you facility is getting hit in the wallet.


Quizzes by Quibblo.com

Note: Adobe Flash Player is required to view this poll. To download the latest version, click here.

Sterilization FAQ’s

By: December 12th, 2008 Email This Post Print This Post

Operating steam sterilizers can be tricky at times, so your best bet is to consult the manufacturers instructions, since each machine is unique. Still you’re bound to run into a few questions that will go unanswered.

Luckily we’ve got some answers. Below are a three questions that healthcare professionals run into most often, along with a few online resources if you need a reference point.

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