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Region 5 News Release: 11-579-CHI
May 3, 2011
Contact: Scott Allen      Rhonda Burke
Phone: 312-353-6976      312-353-4807
Email: allen.scott@dol.gov      burke.rhonda@dol.gov

US Labor Department's OSHA cites Paradise Park Assisted Living in
Lake Zurich, Ill., with safety and health violations after needle stick injury

LAKE ZURICH, Ill. – The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Paradise Park Assisted Living LLC in Lake Zurich with 17 safety and health violations after a nurse practitioner allegedly was injured in a November 2010 needle stick incident. The facility faces penalties totaling $72,000.

"Employers are responsible for knowing the health and safety hazards that apply to their facilities, and for taking necessary precautions by following OSHA standards and providing workers with the proper training," said Diane Turek, OSHA's Chicago North Area Office director in Des Plaines. "For 40 years, OSHA has been committed to protecting workers, because no one should have to risk injury or death for a paycheck."

Twelve serious health violations include failing to immediately test the blood of a source individual involved in a needle stick incident; ensure blood test results were communicated to the nurse practitioner; offer the hepatitis B vaccination to a caregiver with occupational exposure to blood within 10 working days of initial assignment; train employees in the hazards of chemicals present in their workspaces; maintain material safety data sheets for hazardous chemicals; identify the work area and provide an explanation of injuries in the sharps injury log; fully implement and annually train employees on the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, including post-exposure evaluation and follow-up emergency procedures; and ensure containers for disposal of contaminated sharps were easily accessible to nurses in order to minimize exposure. A serious violation occurs when there is substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known.

Five other-than-serious safety and health violations include failing to record the contents of training sessions conducted in 2009 and 2010 in employee training records; explain to newly hired staff the color coding, signs and labels used on regulated sharps waste containers; maintain records of employees who declined to accept the hepatitis B vaccination; explain and make copies accessible to nurses of OSHA's Bloodborne Pathogens Standard; and properly record entries in the OSHA 300 log of workplace-related injuries and illnesses. An other-than-serious violation is one that has a direct relationship to job safety and health, but probably would not cause death or serious physical harm. Detailed information on bloodborne pathogen hazards and safeguards is available online at http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/bloodbornepathogens/index.html.

Paradise Park Assisted Living LLC, which also has facilities in Fox Lake and New Lenox, has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. Employers and employees with questions regarding workplace safety and health standards can call OSHA's Chicago North office at 847-803-4800. To report workplace incidents, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, call the agency's toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742).

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, audio tape or disc from the COAST office upon request by calling 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755.


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