- OSHA Healthcare Advisor - http://blogs.hcpro.com/osha -

Ask the Expert—Safety needles in small healthcare facilities

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.

A: If the medical practice has employees who are at risk for exposure to bloodborne pathogens, then OSHA’s bloodborne pathogen standards applies, regardless of size, newness of the business, type of practice, etc.

This OSHA letter of interpretation,  “Bloodborne Pathogens Standard application to small healthcare facilities and the annual review of the Exposure Control Plan,” [1] directly explains the requirement for a small healthcare facility,  such as a medical or dental practice, to follow the bloodborne pathogen standard.

It specially addresses the requirements to:

OSHA’s Medical & Dental Offices: A Guide to Compliance with OSHA Standards [2] identifies the standards that frequently apply to small healthcare facilities. They are:

Of course the Quality America Basic Medical OSHA Compliance Manual Kit [14] and the Medical Environment training videos on bloodborne pathogens [15] and hazard communication [16] will quickly get you started on OSHA compliance for a new office or identify compliance gaps with your current plan.