Work Practice Controls

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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens for Healthcare Personnel. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Work Practice Controls

Work practice controls are practices that reduce the risk of exposure, altering the way in which a task is performed to make it safer. There is also a need to implement certain work practices controls/procedures to make effective use of the engineering controls available. Wherever there is a risk of exposure to bloodborne pathogens or other potentially infectious materials (OPIM), these restrictions apply:
  • No smoking
  • No eating or drinking
  • No applying cosmetics or lip balm
  • No handling contact lenses
  • Food and beverages cannot be kept in refrigerators, freezers, shelves, cabinets, or countertops where blood or OPIM are present.
  • No mouth pipetting
Additional work practice controls include:
  • Enforcing hand washing procedures following the removal of gloves
  • Restricting access to only authorized personnel (eg, surgical areas, laboratory, pathology)
  • Creating a neutral zone in surgery
  • Decontaminating equipment before servicing
  • Enforcing a single hand method to activate needle safety shields