OSHA compliance is essential to keeping your work environment safe, but it can still be a lot to handle. That’s why MedPro is dedicated to helping educate you and your staff on ways to make compliance a simple and hassle-free part of your life.
We have a great library of resources, training materials, and compliance aids available to you, but we also want to get you started with the basics – so we’ve put together this Quick Start Guide – both to walk you easily through the minimum requirements for your facility and to familiarize you with some of the next steps you can take in getting your practice and your people well on the way to streamlined OSHA compliance.
Meeting Minimum Requirements
The most important OSHA requirements are the same regardless of practice size. Use this checklist to gauge where you stand today. Are you…
- Training your employees regularly?
- Providing employees with Hepatitis B vaccinations at no cost?
- Using universal precautions?
- Using engineering and work practice controls, as well as appropriate personal protective equipment (gloves, face and eye protection, gowns–at no charge to employees)
- Creating a written Exposure Control Plan (ECP), and making it readily available to all workers?
- Updating your written ECP plan annually?
- Following-up in the event of an exposure incident?
- Considering, implementing, and using safer, engineered needles and sharps?
- Using labels or color-coding for items such as sharps disposal boxes and containers for regulated waste, contaminated laundry, and various specimens?
- Properly containing all regulated waste?
The Basics of An ECP
An Exposure Control Plan (ECP) is a pillar of safety in your practice.
According to the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, an Exposure Control Plan must meet specific criteria. It must be:
- Written to the specifics of your facility.
- Reviewed and updated annually (at a minimum), and reflect changes such as new worker positions or technology used to reduce exposures to blood or body fluids.
- Readily available to all workers.
It is also your responsibility to regularly educate your workers on how to use your ECP and keep them updated on where it’s kept (so it is available in the event of an incident).
The Particulars of Your Practice
Once you’ve handled the minimum requirements and basics of an ECP, it’s time to move on to the specific challenges your practice faces.
Figuring out your specific needs will revolve around variables such as geographic location, the types of equipment and materials you use, and the types of patients you treat (among other things). You can find more information in the complete text of OSHA regulations here.
- OSHA Brochure for Medical and Dental Offices
- Needle FAQ
- How to Prepare for OSHA’s Unannounced Onsite Inspections