Workplace Safety: Why the Medical Waste Community Needs OSHA
If workplace safety is important to you, you need to know about OSHA.
“OSHA doesn’t kill jobs; it helps prevent jobs from killing workers.”
These are the words written by Dr. David Michaels when he became head of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in 2009.
If you have a job, then you’ve probably heard about OSHA; it is the arm of the Department of Labor whose 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.”
OSHA officially formed on April 28, 1971, not long after the Occupational Safety and Health Act was signed into law on December 29, 1970 by President Richard M. Nixon.
So what is OSHA and why do we need it?
The United States Department of Labor reports on its Job Safety and Health fact sheet: “Each year, approximately 6,000 employees in this country die from workplace injuries while another 50,000 die from illnesses caused by exposure to workplace hazards. In addition, 6 million workers suffer non-fatal workplace injuries at an annual cost to U.S. businesses of more than $125 billion.”
Essentially, OSHA exists to keep employees safe. Investing time and money into workplace safety will pay off in the long term, and this is especially true in the medical waste community. That is precisely why we need OSHA.
OSHA works. It saves lives and reduces injuries/illnesses, and this, in turn, helps businesses. The safer the workplace, the better for any company and its employees. Workplace accidents can result in hefty medical costs and legal fees, not to mention decreased productivity due to workforce absences.
OSHA regulations can seem a bit overwhelming, especially for smaller businesses, like tattoo parlors that deal with medical waste but do not operate like a large-scale hospital. Creating a safety plan for your business and making sure you company is OSHA compliant involves ongoing work, but MedXwaste can help.
Through our online OSHA Compliance Training Program our customers have access to information on all OSHA standards, particularly those that pertain to the medical waste community. We can help your facility obtain information on first aid procedures and protection against bloodborne pathogens in the workplace. Bloodborne pathogens training is required for workers who have occupational exposure to these, such as medical workers, emergency workers, and yes, tattoo artists.
We also have the 411 on identifying hazardous substances in the workplace and training on how to treat injuries from these substances. All hazardous substances will have Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). You must obtain these sheets from the manufacturers, keep them in a place where employees can find and refer to them, and train employees on how to read them to find information on treating injuries. Our program offers access to millions of MSDS/SDS.
Remember, creating workplace safety is not only beneficial, it’s the law. Let MedXwaste help you with all of your OSHA needs and questions.
Contact us today!