Facility Faces $72,000 Fine after Worker's Needlestick Injury

Twelve serious health violations include failing to offer the hepatitis B vaccination to a caregiver with occupational exposure to blood within 10 working days of initial assignment and train employees in the hazards of chemicals present in their workspaces.

OSHA has cited Paradise Park Assisted Living LLC in Lake Zurich, Ill., with 17 safety and health violations after a nurse practitioner allegedly was injured in a November 2010 needlestick 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 needlestick 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.

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.

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