There are important OSHA guidelines for Medical Offices, and doctors should adhere to those. As a general rule, most office managers and safety managers are usually in charge of OSHA. But that doesn’t mean that doctors shouldn’t understand them, as well. Healthcare logistics are a thing that doctors need to understand, no matter the field they practice in.
We’ve written this article to give you 4 OSHA Guidelines for Medical Offices, which are very important to know, especially if you’re a doctor.
OSHA guidelines regarding bloodborne pathogens
According to the official OSHA website, there are some medical guidelines that are frequently requested, and those are the ones preventing the spread of bloodborne pathogens.
These guidelines talk about the importance of universal precautions, like proper sharps disposal, giving post-exposure medical exams and a vaccine for Hepatitis B to all the employees, without any price. There’s also the use of color coding to show the different types of regulated waste.
The OSHA guidelines for medical offices ask for a written exposure control plan. You’re probably wondering what’s an exposure control plan. It is a document that comes with a list of employees who may be exposed to bloodborne pathogens while they work. The procedures are used to avoid the contamination with bloodborne pathogens, and post-exposure evaluation and even follow-up, together with the methods for reporting the exposure and the source of the exposure.
OSHA guidelines regarding ionizing radiation
For this, the OSHA guidelines ask for all x-ray equipment and all the doors to rooms to contain the x-ray equipment to be labeled with some signs, that have the text “Caution: X-Ray Radiation” on them.
These guidelines also state that all the areas that contain radiation of some x-ray equipment should be restricted to access, or simply limit the amount of radiation to which the employees are exposed.
The medical offices that have the x-ray equipment are required to offer radiation monitors, too, like personal dosimeters, to each and every employee who operated the equipment and to all the employees of which the work involved exposure to radiation.
OSHA guidelines regarding hazardous, dangerous communications
All the medical offices have to have a hazard communication program, which is supposed to give details on how to train in a specific, dangerous situation, and it’s supposed to be given to each and every employee.
The OSHA guidelines must have medical offices to provide the employees with pieces of information with regards to any kind of hazard that can happen. The list should include a copy of the Material Safety Data Sheet for each and every chemical used, a list of those dangerous chemicals, and employee training in how to handle chemicals and medical waste, as well as other hazards.
OSHA guidelines regarding fire and exits all around the medical offices
All medical offices, with no exception, should give safe and accessible exists from the building in case there’s an emergency. There should be exit signs and a diagram which shows evacuation routes posted everywhere they are visible and to all the staff and the patients.
This should include putting the signs in each and every treatment and examination room. Also, all the medical offices that use flammable gas MUST be adhered to the OSHA guidelines on equipment installation and wiring, all related to flammable gases.
All the medical offices are asked by OSHA to talk to their local fire department about electrical and fire guidelines.
It also might not be a bad idea to talk to some insurance companies or even an independent OSHA consultant for pieces of advice.
OSHA guidelines regarding electrical hazards
Many of the procedures that are actually performed in a medical office ask for the use of some medical equipment. It’s crucial for a medical office to have regular inspections of the equipment and to see how it can maintain it. Among the electrical standards to protect the employees from being injured, we have the staff, that’s supposed to be trained in the proper use of all of the equipment. Also, the equipment should only be used by one employee only with the purpose of doing his job.
The equipment should have a tag with the inspection date, the date when the next inspection will happen, and also the initials of the inspector.
If something happens, that leads to failure or malfunction; the equipment should be tagged immediately with a sign that writes “OUT OF SERVICE.”