Health Care Environmental Health and Safety
The health care industry has one of the highest rates of work related injuries and illnesses. Health care workers can potentially be exposed to a number of serious hazards including bloodborne pathogens and biological hazards, potential chemical and drug exposures, waste anesthetic gas exposures, respiratory hazards, ergonomic hazards from lifting and repetitive tasks, laser hazards, workplace violence, hazards associated with laboratories, and radioactive material and x-ray hazards. Some of the potential chemical exposures include formaldehyde, used for preservation of specimens for pathology; ethylene oxide, glutaraldehyde, and paracetic acid used for sterilization; and numerous other chemicals used in healthcare laboratories. Ecothink group environmental professionals and certified industrial hygienists (CIH) have extensive experience resolving complex challenges in the health care setting.
Healthcare workers such as physicians, nurses, technicians, clinical laboratory workers, first responders, building maintenance, security and administrative personnel, social workers, food service, housekeeping, and mortuary personnel are exposed to a variety of infectious diseases. Read more . . .
The anesthetic gases and vapors that escape into the room during medical procedures are considered waste anesthetic gases. Read more . . .
Ventilation system effectiveness in critical areas of medical facilities is required to be tested as per the Guidelines for the Construction of Hospital and Healthcare Facilities and OSHA ventilation standards. Read more . . .
Employers are required by OSHA to evaluate employees’ workplace exposures to potential hazards. Read more . . .
Healthcare workers are at risk of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) from ergonomic hazards. Read more . . .
Hazardous Waste Management and Disposal
Specialized hazardous waste generated by health care facilities requires thorough characterization and management. Read more . . .
Biological Safety Cabinets
A biosafety cabinet (BSC), also referred to as a biological safety cabinet or microbiological safety cabinet, is an enclosed, ventilated laboratory workspace for safely working with materials contaminated with (or potentially contaminated with) pathogens requiring a specific biosafety level. Read more . . .
OSHA has enacted a laboratory standard 29 CFR 1910.1450 “Occupational exposure to hazardous chemicals in laboratories. Read more . . .
Respirator Program Evaluation and Fit Testing
Employees may be exposed to airborne infectious agents such as Tuberculosis from improper use or fit of respirator, or improper reuse of damaged or soiled respirators and/or an ineffective respiratory protection program. Read more . . .
Legionnaires’ Disease is a bacterial disease commonly associated with water-based aerosols and has been traced to poorly maintained air conditioning cooling towers and potable water systems. Read more . . .
Emergency Preparedness and Response
Emergencies can create a variety of hazards for workers in the impacted area. Read more . . .