According to a news release posted on EHSToday.com, OSHA is really ramping up how much it charges businesses in violation of their standards.
The agency recently raised fines for the first time since 1990, with the fine jumping from $70,000 to $124,709 for a single willful or repeat violation. The fine for a serious or other-than-serious violation can range from $7,000 to $12,471.
Michael Rubin, a partner at Goldberg Segalla LLP also says there’s something else that goes along with these hefty fines, which he calls “the shame game.”
According to Rubin, this means OSHA will also create press releases and make efforts to shame businesses that have violations.
That makes it m ore important than ever for healthcare-related businesses to be proactive in avoiding these fines and consequences.
Below are some of the most common OSHA violations seen in the healthcare industry.
Lack of Training Under the BBP Standard
The BBP Standard refers to the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogen Standard, and it is amended based on the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act of 2000. This standard describes how workers should be protected and protect themselves against the health hazards of bloodborne pathogens.
Some of the areas it covers include control plans, personal protective equipment, housekeeping, hazard communication and training, and recordkeeping.
Part of complying with this frequently cited regulation includes how regulated waste is removed.
Many of the top citations revolve around the BBP standard, including not just failure to train but also a failure to implement and maintain control plans, and failure to keep training records and a Sharps Injury Log.
Failing to Provide Material Safety Data Sheets
OSHA requires safety data sheets, and they are designed to provide information identifying materials as well as their potential hazards. Data sheets should also include composition and details on ingredients, as well as first-aid measures if someone has been exposed to something listed on the sheet.
Other details on required data sheets include how to respond to an accidental release, how they should be handled and stored, proper exposure controls and personal protection, and more, such as how they should be disposed of.
Not Training Employees On the Hazard Communication Standard
The final citation that’s frequently given to medical facilities including not only hospitals but also smaller doctor’s offices and clinics involves not training employees on the Hazard Communication Standard.
In order to remain compliant, healthcare businesses are meant to train their employees on the HaCom/GHS Standard and write their Hazard Communication Program for their facility.
Part of this also includes the creation and maintenance of Safety Data Sheets.
For healthcare businesses and facilities that are concerned about the rigorous OSHA standards and the potential to receive a citation, working with MedAssure can help make sure you remain compliant.
MedAssure delivers OSHA and other training services and also helps healthcare facilities exceed regulatory standards. It’s important for healthcare businesses to stay proactive as they put in place means to avoid OSHA citations.