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1939. PREVENTION OF NEEDLESTICK AND OTHER SHARPS INJURIES
Priority: Economically Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.
Unfunded Mandates: Undetermined
Legal Authority: 29 USC 655(b); 29 USC 657
CFR Citation: 29 CFR 1910.1030
Legal Deadline: None
Abstract: In 1998, OSHA published a Request for Information (RFI) requesting information from the public on the incidence of needlestick and sharps injuries among workers in healthcare, nursing home, and other related work settings; the availability and extent of use of safer medical devices to prevent such injuries; the potential cost and feasibility implications of relying on such devices; how best to evaluate the efficacy of these devices and encourage worker acceptance of them, and other issues. Workers receiving such injuries may contract such deadly diseases as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) if the needle or sharp causing the injury is contaminated by blood or other potentially infectious material from a patient or client with bloodborne disease. OSHA received 396 responses to the RFI. It has been estimated that there are 590,000 contaminated needlestick and sharps injuries every year. OSHA decided to take several actions in response to the information received: issuance of the RFI summary report; revision of the compliance directive (CPL 2- 2.44D) for the Bloodborne Pathogens standard (29 CFR 1910.1030); and proposed revision of the Bloodborne Pathogens standard to clarify that, where feasible, safer medical devices must be used to satisfy the requirements of that paragraph: "Engineering and work practice controls shall be used to eliminate or minimize employee exposure." The revised compliance directive was issued in 1999. OSHA intends to issue the proposed rule in the Spring of 2001, and to hold stakeholder meetings in the summer of 2000.
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: No
Government Levels Affected: Undetermined
Federalism: This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.
Agency Contact: Marthe B. Kent, Acting Director, Directorate of Health
Standards Programs, Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health
Administration, Room N3718, 200 Constitution Avenue NW, FP Building,
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1950
Fax: 202 693-1678
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