This standard makes work safer for anyone working in the St. Louis healthcare environment.
When we think of the medical profession, we likely think of the people who work hard to look after us when we are sick. We may rarely, if ever, think about their health. However, working in the medical field is a pretty dangerous job when it comes to your health. Healthcare professionals are exposed to all sorts of potentially dangerous issues on a regular basis. Working in a medical environment often puts medical professionals in regular contact with people who are sick. This often exposes them to some serious, infectious diseases.
The majority of the most dangerous infectious diseases are found in blood. It is this type of pathogen that we refer to as ‘bloodborne’. Our St Louis worker injury lawyer says that more than five and a half million medical workers are at a daily risk of exposure to bloodborne pathogens.
This puts medical professionals at risk of contracting potentially life threatening diseases such as HIV, Malaria, E Coli, Hepatitis, Syphilis and many more.
The Bloodborne Pathogens Standard
This standard is a set of rules for employers in the medical and healthcare fields to follow. The standard states that:
- There must be a period of thorough research and plans should be put in place to control the levels of pathogen exposure for employees.
- Employees must be provided with written guidelines as to how to minimize their risk of bloodborne pathogens in the workplace. Employees must also be offered vaccines for pathogens if there is one available. A process of testing for anyone exposed to a pathogen must also be offered.
- This plan must be reviewed on a yearly basis to take into account any changes in working practices or the frequency of certain diseases being encountered in the workplace.
- Precautions should be taken with all samples, not just those that are known to contain bloodborne pathogens.
- Employees must wear the correct protective clothing and any instruments that come into contact with blood must be disposed of these in the correct manner. Warning signs and labels for hazardous materials must be implemented effectively.
Who does this standard benefit?
This standard benefits everyone. It may cost businesses some money, but in the long run, workers infected by a bloodborne pathogen in the workplace have the right to claim workers comp. Failure on part of the employer to comply to the standard could result in a hefty compensation claim payout. It is therefore far better for employers to adhere to the standard.
This standard makes work safer for anyone working in the healthcare environment. It keeps our doctors and nurses safe and healthy and also helps keep bloodborne pathogens from spreading to patients accidentally.