Disease and Injury

Exposure

The law requires employers to provide their employees with a safe and healthy workplace. In the Life Sciences segment, work in a variety of environments (such as laboratory, animal vivarium, clean room, manufacturing production line, or warehouse) present employees with a wide range of on-the-job hazards, including: 

  • Allergic or irritant dermatitis

  • Asthma or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

  • Fertility and pregnancy abnormalities

  • Hearing loss

  • Cellular mutations or damage resulting from exposure to radiation

  • Pulmonary injury resulting from exposure to nanoparticles

  • Infectious diseases

  • Lower back disorders

  • Musculoskeletal disorders of the upper extremities

  • Traumatic injuries

What Can Happen

Life Sciences organizations can be faced with short-term and long-term disability, employee turnover, a decrease in productivity, increased costs, and reduced employee satisfaction. 

How to Reduce Risk

The most effective means to foster a safe workplace environment is to follow the Hierarchy of Risk Management controls regarding exposures*:

  • Eliminate

  • Substitute

  • Engineered/Physical Controls

  • Administrative Controls (medical surveillance/IH monitoring), and lastly

  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Where it is not feasible or practical to eliminate or substitute a known exposure, the following controls help to mitigate risk:

  • Effective occupational, safety and health committee and officer

  • Facility safety controls

  • Voluntary medical removal program

  • Physical controls (e.g., chemical fume hoods, glove boxes, HEPA filtration, local exhaust ventilation, general exhaust ventilation, power-handling enclosures, biosafety cabinets, lead-lined enclosures, etc.)

  • Industrial hygiene testing(e.g., metals, dust, or other airborne toxins)

  • Medical screening and surveillance

  • Hearing conservation program

  • Formal annual safety training (exposures driven and general safety awareness)

  • Vivarium safety program (e.g., employee vaccinations, routine allergen testing, restricted access, automated case-washing equipment, etc. )

  • Perform laboratory, manufacturing/production, and/or general office ergonomic evaluation(s)

  • Personal protective equipmet

*Ref. NIOSH

Contact us to learn more about how we can help protect your organization.

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