Medical Environment Update—Getting real with OSHA violation data

By: September 7th, 2010 Email This Post Print This Post

The September issue of  Medical Environment Update examines the most frequent and expensive fines for medical and dental practices for past year. As expected bloodborne pathogens predominate, but unlike other inspection data from OSHA, this specially obtained report goes into the details of what OSHA is finding and what it is fining medical and dental practices for workplace safety violations. Here is what the article covers:

  • Overview of fines for the last 12 months (click here for excerpt)
  • Common medical practice violations, chapter and verse
  • Expensive fines; like working without a net
  • What about dental practices?
  • Table: Quick look at frequent and expensive OSHA fines, July 2009 to June 2010
  • How to use these data

Here is an excerpt from that article and a look at what else is covered in the September issue.

If you received a citation during an OSHA inspection in the past year, chances are the inspector found something wrong with your exposure control plan (ECP). If you didn’t get inspected, chances are there is still something wrong with your ECP.

That’s because bloodborne pathogens ECP citations—the requirement has been in effect since the promulgation of the standard in 1990—have again topped the list of OSHA violations for medical and dental practices, according to a report from OSHA.

The overview

Every year, Medical Environment Update acquires a detailed report of citations by standard for medical (the category includes clinics, ambulatory surgery centers, and various outpatient settings) and dental practices from the OSHA Office of Management Systems. The data, which cover all federal and state citations from July 2009 through June 2010, showed 708 individual citations for medical practices, an increase of 20% from the previous year, and 392 citations for dental practices, an increase of 30%.

Total fines increased by approximately the same proportion on the medical side, while decreasing on the dental side. The difference in the dental amount was due to an extraordinary fine of $76,500 imposed on a Nashua, NH, dental practice for willful violations of the Bloodborne Pathogens standard in September 2008.

The Medical Environment Update September issue also includes:

Click on the link below for more information about subscribing to Medical Environment Update and the OSHA Program Manual.

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