Johns Hopkins Hospital Removing All Latex Gloves, Products

The Johns Hopkins Hospital announced Jan. 14 that is has become the first major medical institution to become "latex safe" by ending all uses of natural rubber latex gloves and almost all medical latex products. Johns Hopkins is now using sterile neoprene and polyisoprene gloves in the operating room and neoprene gloves for all non-sterile procedures requiring the use of gloves. "Latex hospital gloves were invented here, so it's only fitting that Johns Hopkins takes the initiative to promoting alternatives," said Johns Hopkins anesthesiologist Robert H. Brown, M.D., M.P.H., who chairs the John Hopkins Hospital Latex Task Force.

Two Hopkins immunologists, Robert Hamilton, Ph.D., and Franklin Adkinson, M.D., conducted early research about latex's role as an allergen. Brown said nurses and other front-line hospital workers have been instrumental in implementing the new policy and educating staffers. Up to 15 percent of health care workers and about 6 percent of the general public are allergic to latex, studies show.

Ridding the hospital of all latex is a challenge, Brown said in a news release posted by the Johns Hopkins Health Systems. "We are still searching the hospital for the few remaining medical latex products that we might have overlooked, although we can safely say that all major latex products that are a clear risk to health care workers and patients have been eliminated," he said.

A good resource on allergens in hospital environments is "Healthy Choices: Transforming Our Hospitals into Environmentally Healthy and Safe Places," written by Barbara Sattler, RN, DrPH, FAAN, and Kathryn Hall, RN, MSN. Published in the May 2007 issue of the American Nurses Association's Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, the article lists 11 chemicals, including natural rubber latex, that either cause asthma or trigger asthma symptoms in someone who has asthma. The article is posted at http://nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/Volume122007/May31/HealthyChoices.aspx,

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Incident investigation guide

    Need some tips for conducting an incident investigation at work after there’s been an occupational injury or illness, or maybe even a near miss? This guide presents a comprehensive overview of methods of performing incident investigations to lead you through your next steps.

  • Steps to Conduct a JSA

    We've put together a comprehensive step-by-step guide to help you perform a job safety analysis (JSA), which includes a pre-built, JSA checklist and template, steps of a JSA, list of potential job hazards, and an overview of hazard control hierarchy.

  • Levels of a Risk Matrix

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Free Safety Management Software Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Management Software helps organizations to improve safety by providing a comprehensive toolset of software modules to help businesses identify trouble spots; reduce claims, lost days, OSHA fines; and more.

  • Industry Safe
Bulwark FR Quiz

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - July August 2020

    July August 2020

    Featuring:

    • CONFINED SPACES
      Addressing Confined Spaces and Heat Stress Concerns
    • PROTECTIVE APPAREL
      Why Daily Wear FR Garments Make Sense No Matter the Season
    • HAND PROTECTION
      The Magic of New Technology
    • CHEMICAL SAFETY
      Why Effective Chemical Safety Training is More Important Than Ever
    View This Issue