This past week, the Occupational Health & Safety Administration (OSHA) cited an Ohio -based Nursing Home for several repeated violations that left workers exposed to biological hazards.
After seventeen years helping injured workers, we have seen all manner of injuries and occupational diseases. While rare for employees in general, hospital and nursing home workers are exposed to biological hazards most of us never face. Although the law provides a presumption that Hepatitis C is contracted on the job for firefighters, emergency services providers and peace officers – it does not extend to nursing home or routine medical workers. See CRS 8-41-208.
This make it critical that both the employee and employer follow established procedures whenever an exposure to biological hazards occur. OSHA requires employers to make a list of all tasks and procedures in which occupational exposure to biological hazards may occur. Safety evaluations and training must occur. The matter is so serious OSHA is proposing $89,000 in penalties against the Royal Oak Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Cleveland, Ohio.
Employees should make sure that every biological exposure – such as cuts, needle punctures, direct exposure to bodily fluids and wastes – is recorded in the injury log that OSHA requires each nursing home and hospital to keep. Because these types of injuries are not obvious at once, but rather after several months when the diseases takes hold – these records will be critical to showing that the worker contracted the disease at work – rather (as the employer will claim) than off-the-job.
If you have suffered an exposure to a biological hazard that has led to you contracting a serious disease call us at (866) 356-9898 for your FREE CONSULTATION. We have helped injured workers throughout Colorado obtain the Workers’ Compensation and Social Security benefits they deserve for their work injuries. It’s all we do – and we do it very well.