Prevention for Safety

The Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act

The Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP) Standard was set forth in 1991 by the Occupational Health and Safety Agency (OSHA) and requires employers to:

  • Develop a written exposure control plan
  • Set in place universal precautions•Provide personal protective equipment
  • Use preventive engineering controls, such as retractable needles•Implement work practice controls
  • Prohibit recapping, bending and removing used needles

The Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act was passed unanimously passed by both houses of Congress and was signed by President Clinton in the year of 2000. This act was designed to protect U.S. healthcare workers from injuries caused by needles and other sharp medical devices and requires employers to:

  • Demonstrate that they are reviewing new technology and engineering controls to reduce the risk of needle stick injury annually.
  • Maintain a sharps injury log to track, report and describe such incidents.
  • Solicit input from employees who actually provide direct care in the identification, evaluation, and selection of effective safety devices and work practice controls.

OSHA – Occupational Safety and Health Administration

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is an agency of the United States Department of Labor which was established in 1970. OSHA’s mission is to “assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance”.

Website: www.osha.gov/

CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the leading national public health institute of the United States. The CDC is a federal agency under the Department of Health and Human Services, headquartered near Atlanta, GA. Its main goal is to protect public health and safety through the control and prevention of disease, injury, and disability in the US and internationally. It focuses its attention on infectious disease, food borne pathogens, environmental health, occupational safety and health, health promotion, injury prevention and educational activities designed to improve the health of U.S. citizens.

Website: www.cdc.gov

NIOSH – National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is the United States federal agency responsible for conducting research and making recommendations for the prevention of work related injury and illness. NIOSH is a part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
NIOSH works to prevent work-related illness, injury, disability, and death by gathering information, conducting scientific research, and translating the knowledge gained into products and services.

Website: www.cdc.gov/niosh/

OSAP – Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention

The Organization for Safety, Asepsis and Prevention (OSAP) is a voluntary organization composed of clinicians, educators, researchers, and industry representatives who advocate for safe and infection-free delivery of oral healthcare.
OSAP offers an extensive online collection of resources, publications, FAQs, checklists and toolkits for safe dental visits.

Website: www.osap.org

Research Article:

Shah SM, Merchant AT, Dosman JA: Percutaneous injuries among dental professionals in Washington State. BMC Public Health 2006. 6:269-73

PDF File.