OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
Trade News Release
Thursday, June 8, 2000
Contact: Susan Hall Fleming
PHONE: (202) 693-1999
OSHA AND JOINT COMMISSION EXTEND EFFORTS
TO PROMOTE HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR HEALTHCARE WORKERS
Safer jobs for healthcare workers is the goal of an extended partnership agreement to be signed today by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.
The new agreement emphasizes recognizing excellence in worker safety and health among healthcare institutions and encouraging participation in OSHA's premier partnership, the Voluntary Protection Programs. OSHA and the Joint Commission will also continue developing and delivering joint educational programs.
"This partnership between OSHA and the Joint Commission is a very fruitful alliance," said OSHA Administrator Charles N. Jeffress. "It has dramatically expanded OSHA's reach in the healthcare industry and produced a voluntary performance strategy that has improved worker safety and health throughout the industry."
"In just three years, this collaborative partnership has had far-reaching, positive effects on all accredited organizations," said Dennis S. O'Leary, M.D., president, Joint Commission. "The continuation of this synergistic relationship will enable us to pursue additional areas of mutual collaboration that will benefit the healthcare industry."
OSHA and the Joint Commission have been working together since 1996 to help hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities understand how to meet the requirements of both organizations to provide a safe and healthful environment for workers who care for others. The two organizations have developed training materials and publications for healthcare facilities and provided specific examples in Joint Commission accreditation manuals to illustrate how compliance with OSHA standards also satisfies Joint Commission standards. The partnership helps organizations minimize duplication and focus resources on improving safety and health for workers who face a higher than average risk of occupational illness or injury.
Jeffress and O'Leary are signing the expanded agreement today at Joint Commission headquarters in Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. In 1998, the OSHA-Joint Commission partnership received Vice President Gore's prestigious Hammer Award.
The Joint Commission is an independent, not-for-profit organization that evaluates and accredits more than 5,000 hospitals and more than 12,000 other healthcare organizations. The Joint Commission's mission is to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public.
The text of this news release appears on the Internet World Wide Web at http://www.osha.gov.
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