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Health Care Environment Safety
Safety Instruction Number:53
Last Update:Wed, 09/12/2007
General: Comply with all rules governing safe work practices and conduct in your work area. Know and follow established work procedures, and understand the meaning of all warning signals. If you have doubt concerning the safe way to perform a job, ask your supervisor before proceeding.
- If you find defective equipment, report it to your supervisor and return it for repair or replacement.
- For general surface cleaning, use nonflammable cleaning agents.
- Aerosol cans must be sent to Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) for disposal.
- Extension cords are only intended for temporary use. Fused plug strips plugged directly into a wall outlet are acceptable for long term use.
- Route cords so they are not used across wet surfaces or main aisles exposed to vehicle traffic.
- Keep materials at least 18" away from the ceiling and all sprinkler heads.
- Sharp items - broken glass, syringe needles, or other sharp objects - should be placed in sharps containers for disposal as infection waste.
- Chemical wastes: contact EH&S for disposal guidelines and waste pickup.
- Flammable liquids should not be in refrigerators unless specifically designed for such storage.
- Wait to open steam pressure sterilizers until the entire internal pressure has been relieved and the gauge reads zero.
- Report any unsafe conditions involving pressure sterilizers. Such equipment should not be used if gauges or heat control devices are not functioning properly.
- Secure gas cylinders at all times to prevent tipping. Contact EH&S and distributor immediately in case of cylinder leak.
- Store flammable compressed gases away from oxygen.
- When lifting patients, obtain help if the weight of the patient is beyond your lifting capacity.
- Before leaving patients alone, make sure it is safe to do so.
- Report any unsafe conditions involving wheel chairs, beds, electrical machines, wires or other equipment which could cause injury.
- Before using diathermy, check area for metal jewelry, buckles, etc. Also check for metal plates, pins, or screws inserted as part of orthopedic surgery.
- Before using an AED, check for and remove skin patch medicines.
- Hydraulic, mechanical, or electrical patient hoists shall be used only by proper.y trained and authorized personnel.
- Prevent infection by wearing appropriate protective equipment and using appropriate engineering controls such as hand wash sinks and showers, biohazardous waste collector, biohazardous shields, and venting system hoods.