Crime Scene Cleanup >> Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida

The term "contaminated laundry" was used in the proposed standard in the description of paragraph (d)(4)(iv) housekeeping, but no definition was provided for the term. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida The final standard contains a definition "contaminated laundry". 

This term is used to identify laundry which has been soiled with blood or other potentially infectious materials or may contain blood or other potentially infectious materials or may contain contaminated sharps. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida Several commenters suggested the use of the word "soiled" to describe laundry which required special handling. 

However, although "soiled" laundry would certainly include laundry that may contain blood or other potentially infectious materials or contaminated sharps, Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida the term also describes items that are merely used or contain substances other than bloodborne pathogens, such as urine or feces. 

This standard applies only to bloodborne pathogens so in the absence of visible blood, this standard does not apply to urine and feces. Therefore, OSHA has concluded that "soiled laundry" is not specific enough for the purpose of the standard. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida The term "contaminated laundry" has been chosen to clarify OSHA's intent to differentiate linens which require special handling. 

Since "contaminated" has been defined to mean the presence or reasonably anticipated presence of blood or Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida other potentially infectious material on an item or surface, nearly all laundry used in patient care can be considered contaminated. 

The potential presence of contaminated sharps in used laundry creates a unique hazard which emphasizes the need to handle certain laundry as contaminated. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida "Contaminated Sharps" are defined in this standard as any object, contaminated with blood or other potentially infectious material, that is capable of penetrating the skin. 

The proposed standard defined "sharps", using examples of needles, scalpels and broken capillary tubes. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in its Standards for the Tracking and Management of Medical Waste; Interim Final Rule and Request for Comments defines sharps as follows: 

Sharps that have been used in animal or human patient care or treatment or in medical, research, or industrial laboratories, including hypodermic needles, syringes (with or without the attached needle), pasteur pipettes, scalpel blades, blood vials, test tubes, needles with attached tubing, and Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida culture dishes (regardless of presence of infectious agents). (Ex. 6-497) 

Because EPA's definition would encompass a wider variety of sharps than OSHA intended to regulate with this standard, Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida OSHA chose not to use EPA's definition. 

OSHA's goal, which is the reduction or elimination of occupational bloodborne infections, is different than that of the EPA, which is the regulation of medical waste, including unused medical waste. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida However, the need for additional explanation was recognized and OSHA's definition was amended in two ways. 

First, the word "contaminated" has been added to the description of sharps to clarify that OSHA is concerned in this standard with the handling and Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida discarding of only those sharps which have the presence or the reasonably anticipated presence of blood or other potentially infectious materials on them. 

Second, examples of sharps are expanded to include not only needles and scalpels, but also broken glass and the exposed ends of dental wires. There are a number of "sharps" that could cause injury to workers. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida Broken pieces of glass, particularly broken specimen tubes, such as capillary tubes, are hazardous. In dental settings, a unique hazard is the potential for injury from exposed ends of dental wires. 

When these sharps are contaminated, they can be the source of a parenteral exposure to blood and are, therefore, included as examples of "contaminated sharps" in the definition. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida "Decontamination" is discussed above under "Contaminated/Decontaminated." 

"Director" means the Director of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, or designated representative. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida "Engineering Controls" is defined as controls that isolate or remove a hazard from a workplace. 

Biosafety cabinets are examples of engineering controls since they not only remove contaminants through a local exhaust system Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida but provide the added protection of confining the contaminant within an enclosed cabinet thereby isolating it from the worker. 

Other examples of engineering controls are sharps disposal containers which isolate contaminated needles or other sharps from employees. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida Mr. Stanley Dub suggested that the definition of "Engineering Controls" should be changed to include controls "which substantially reduce the presence of the hazard in the workplace." (Ex. 20-516). 

He erroneously inferred that OSHA insists on "controls which completely isolate or remove the hazards." It is generally understood by the occupational health professionals, that engineering controls, Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida such as local exhaust ventilation, remove air contaminants such as formaldehyde or ethylene oxide from occupational environment and thus reduce their concentrations in the workplace. 

This definition conveys the same principle. Therefore, the definition of "engineering controls" remains virtually unchanged for the purpose of this standard. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida The only modification is the addition of a few examples. 

"Exposure Incident" means a specific exposure to the eye, mouth, other mucous membrane, non-intact skin, Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida or parenteral exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials that results from the performance of an employee's duties. 

Examples of an exposure incident include blood spattering into the eyes, splashing into the mouth or a puncture by a blood-contaminated needle. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida  As was pointed out by one commenter, the term "occupational exposure" has been used by others to describe the conditions that OSHA has labelled as an "exposure  incident" (Klaman and Rao, Shadyside Hospital, Ex. 20-546). 

For the purpose of the standard, it is necessary to use one term, "occupational exposure," for reasonably anticipated exposure (which requires the implementation of protective measures) and another term,  Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida "exposure incident," for a discrete exposure event (which requires medical follow-up). 

Although a small amount of blood on intact skin would not be considered an exposure incident under this definition, such an event should be a matter of concern to the employer. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida It may be an indication of inadequate personal protective clothing and equipment and the circumstances surrounding such events should be investigated to determine whether they can be prevented in the future. 

"Handwashing Facilities" means a facility providing an adequate supply of running potable water, soap and single used towels. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida The Agency anticipates that most employees will have access to a sink that can be used for handwashing. 

Clean paper towels, clean roller towels, or a hot air hand dryer may be used. In cases where the above described requirements are not feasible alternative methods are permitted. Forensic Cleaning And Training In Florida See discussion of paragraph (d)(2)(iv)below.

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