Can New OSHA Rules Protect Hospital Workers?
Hospital workers are not only in danger of musculoskeletal injuries, but also respiratory and biological hazards. For this reason, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in conjunction with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health have released new recommendations for hospital workers to avoid airborne hazards.
Airborne hazards in hospitals include exposure to diseases, chemicals and certain drugs. OSHA’s Respiratory Protection Standard ensures that hospitals maintain respiratory protection programs. The recommendations released by OSHA include such things as respirator use and guidance on airborne diseases.
What Airborne Hazards Are Found in Hospitals?
Airborne disease exposure is still fresh on the minds of most Americans. Last year, during the Ebola scare, a hospital worker in Texas encountered a man who had the dangerous West African disease while he was undergoing treatment.
Hospitals are full of potentially dangerous contagions and substances that can turn into airborne hazards for workers. For example, exposure to anesthetic gases can render workers unconscious. Another common cleaning chemical found in hospitals is bleach, which can cause severe irritation and burning.
Can Hospital Workers Get Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
Depending on the accident and resulting injuries, hospital workers might be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Exposure to chemicals can have lasting effects, some of which are not always readily apparent. We have written previous blogs on the dangers of occupational diseases from inhalation hazards.
Contacting an attorney with questions regarding your case costs nothing, and can improve the chances of receiving benefits.
Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC – Columbus Workers’ Comp Lawyers