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    OSHA targets outpatient care centers to reduce needlesticks

    May 4, 2011

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    Atlanta – OSHA on April 25 announced a new Regional Emphasis Program to reduce the number of needlestick and sharps injuries in four Southern states.

    Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Mississippi are included in the program, which is targeting facilities such as ambulatory surgical care centers; freestanding emergency care clinics; and primary medical clinics providing acute, chronic and emergency care.

    OSHA officials will inspect establishments’ processes and programs for protecting workers from bloodborne hazards, with a focus on hazards associated with sharps devices.

    “Needlestick and other sharps-related injuries that expose workers to bloodborne pathogens continue to be an important public health concern,” said Cindy Coe, administrator for OSHA Region 4. “Employers must take seriously their responsibility to protect workers from these health risks.”

    The program will run through Sept. 30.

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