Preventing Occupational Exposure to Antineoplastic and Other Hazardous Drugs in Health Care Settingsby National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
The purpose of this Alert is to
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The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated Appendix A in the NIOSH Alert: Preventing Occupational Exposure to Antineoplastic and Other Hazardous Drugs in Health Care Settings. This list includes drugs reviewed by NIOSH up to June 2007.
The purpose of this Alert is to increase awareness among health care workers and their employers about the health risks posed by working with hazardous drugs and to provide them with measures for protecting their health. Health care workers who prepare or administer hazardous drugs or who work in areas where these drugs are used may be exposed to these agents in the air or on work surfaces, contaminated clothing, medical equipment, patient excreta, and other surfaces. Studies have associated workplace exposures to hazardous drugs with health effects such as skin rashes and adverse reproductive outcomes (including infertility, spontaneous abortions, and congenital malformations) and possibly leukemia and other cancers. The health risk is influenced by the extent of the exposure and the potency and toxicity of the hazardous drug. To provide workers with the greatest protection, employers should (1) implement necessary administrative and engineering controls and (2) assure that workers use sound procedures for handling hazardous drugs and proper protective equipment. The Alert contains a list of drugs that should be handled as hazardous drugs.
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