Archive for: July, 2012

In memoriam – David LaHoda

By: July 26th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

It is with great sadness that I share the news that David LaHoda, our good friend, colleague, and author of this blog, passed away suddenly on July 25, 2012. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

David’s passion for his work shone through in every piece he penned for this site. His knowledge about all things related to OSHA was unparalleled and he conveyed his knowledge in a simple, clear manner that enlightened all who read his updates. His use of humor educated and illuminated and his lighthearted style made government rules and regulatory decisions entertaining and easy to understand.

In addition to writing and maintaining OSHA Healthcare Advisor, David was the writer and editor of the long-running newsletter Medical Environment Update, as well as numerous HCPro books and e-learning courses. He also manned the Compliance Hotline, providing reassurance, advice, and guidance to anyone with an urgent OSHA question.

David was a well-known and highly respected expert in the healthcare profession and his absence will be felt by many. Those of us who knew him well will miss his dedication to his work, colleagues, and readers, his wry sense of humor, and his ability to apply life lessons from The Big Lebowski to any situation.

David leaves a beloved wife and two children, and many family and friends. While many of David’s colleagues and readers never had a chance to meet him face to face, the loss of his presence will be as acute and real as it would be if we worked side by side every day. His HCPro colleagues send our condolences to his family and friends. Please share your memories of David in the comments section below.

–Rebecca Hendren
rhendren@hcpro.com
HCPro, Inc.

NIOSH tweets on Total Worker Health

By: July 24th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

For ground-breaking research, translation and best practices of integrative approaches to protecting and promoting health in the workplace, follow a new NIOSH Twitter feed, @NIOSH_TWH.

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State advises 8,000 dental patients to be tested for hepatitis, HIV

By: July 24th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

An investigation by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment indicates that as many as 8,000 dental patients may have been exposed to bloodborne pathogens from unsafe injection practices.

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Should Fed funding for patient safety go bye-bye?

By: July 23rd, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

A House subcommittee, on July 18, voted to eliminate all funding for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

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Weighty issues: Obese patients and healthcare worker safety

By: July 23rd, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

The nation’s obesity epidemic has healthcare workers, especially nurses and nursing aides, bearing the brunt of injuries from unsafe handling of patients.

“In the course of an eight-hour day, a nurse will typically lift 1.8 tons, which is pretty astronomical,” said Amy Williamson, a workplace safety coordinator for Baptist Hospital, Nashville, TN, reports USA Today, July 19.

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Weekly Poll: Summer dress codes and safety

By: July 23rd, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Do how staff members dress in summertime create worker safety or patient safety problems. Take the OSHA Healthcare Advisor Weekly Poll and let us know.

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Ask the expert: When safety needles and scalpels are the exception

By: July 20th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: What reasons will an OSHA inspector accept for not adopting safety devices, such as safety needles and safety scalpels?

A: “If a safer medical device compromises patient safety, worker safety or the medical integrity, its use would not be required,” states a June 3, 2005, letter of interpretation.

But there are additional conditions.

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LA dumps medical waste fine on hospital

By: July 19th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Kaiser’s South Bay Medical Center will pay $73,615.40 in fines for unlawful disposal of medical waste.

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Oregon’s hospitals report HAI prevention success

By: July 17th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

The fight against healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) by Oregon hospitals has yielded impressive results in decreased infection rates and potential cost savings, according to a July 17 announcement from the CDC.

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Mercy! Time to consider risk of MRSA from unsafe injections

By: July 17th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Move over hepatitis B, C, and HIV, and make room for MRSA infections as a consequence of unsafe injection practices.

A July 16 post on the CDC Safe Healthcare blog by Dr. Michael Bell, associate director for infection control at the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, discusses two recent outbreaks in Arizona and Delaware where the use of medication from single-dose/single-use vials for multiple patients resulted in “staph/MRSA infections in at least 10 patients receiving injections for pain relief.”

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Ask the expert: Healthcare worker TB exposure

By: July 16th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

Q: A patient seen by our practice has recently tested positive for tuberculosis and is undergoing treatment.  From an OSHA perspective, what follow-up treatment do we need to do for employees who were exposed to him?

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Weekly poll: Healthcare workers and latex hazards

By: July 16th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

A jury found against a hospital and awarded $4.7 million in damages in a patient wrongful death suit. The reason, nurses were found negligent in following the hospital’s latex-allergy policy and protocol, according to Outpatient Surgery, July 12. Patients, however, are not the only persons at risk to latex allergies in healthcare settings.

According to OSHA, 8-12% of healthcare workers are latex sensitive, and between 1988 and 1992 there were 1,000 reports of adverse health effects from exposure to latex, including 15 deaths due to such exposure.

In your facility, do you educate healthcare workers and provide them with training materials about latex allergies?

Take the OSHA Healthcare Advisor Weekly Poll and let us know. Also a free Worker Latex Exposure Safety Checklist is available for downloading on the Tools page.

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