US Department of Labor's OSHA fines Englewood, NJ, surgical center $68,000
for failing to protect workers exposed to bloodborne pathogen hazards
ENGLEWOOD, N.J. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited CTO Management LLC, doing business as Health East Ambulatory Surgical Center, with 10 serious violations for bloodborne pathogen hazards found at its Englewood facility. OSHA's August 2012 investigation was initiated in response to a complaint and resulted in $68,000 in proposed penalties.
The serious violations include failing to counsel an employee who was stuck with a contaminated needle, test the employee's blood in a timely manner and provide the appropriate medicine to the employee to prevent contracting a potential disease. A serious citation is issued when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result and the employer new, or should have known, of the hazard.
"If an employee is stuck with a needle, they must be afforded appropriate follow-up medical care to minimize any potential effect," said Lisa Levy, director of OSHA's area office in Hasbrouck Heights. "All medical facilities have a duty to provide a safe and healthful workplace for their employees."
More information on bloodborne pathogens and needlestick prevention is available at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/bloodbornepathogens/index.html.
Health East Ambulatory Surgical Center provides service for a wide spectrum of specialties, including same-day surgery, home nurse care and laboratory services. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations to comply, request an informal conference with the OSHA area director in Hasbrouck Heights, or contest the citations and proposed penalties before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.
To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency's Hasbrouck Heights Area Office at 201-288-1700.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.
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U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The information above is available in large print, Braille or CD from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.
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