DON’T MISS THE OSHA HAZCOM TRAINING DEADLINE
Employees must be trained by December 1, 2013
OSHA Hazmat Pictogram
“Exposure to hazardous chemicals is one of the most serious threats facing American workers today,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis.
To help reduce risk of injury from exposure to harmful chemicals, OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard is now aligned with the United Nations’ Globally Harmonized System (GHS) of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals. This update to the Hazard Communication Standard provides a common and coherent approach to classifying chemicals and communicating hazard information on labels and safety data sheets.
Some of the necessary information to know:
The revised standard is meant to improve the quality and consistency of hazard information in the workplace, making it safer for your staff by providing easily understandable information on appropriate handling and safe use of hazardous chemicals.
Training, which must be provided by Dec. 1, 2013, can be conducted by a staff member using OSHA materials or a consultant specialized in OSHA training. Hazard Communication training is required for employees who are at risk for exposure, which may or may not involve direct handling. No standard exists as far as how often training should take place or how long it should be. Our experts recommend that training take place often enough so that an employee can answer any safety-related question–specifically one posed by an OSHA inspector.
OSHA requires general OSHA training upon hire, anytime regulations change relative to the hazards present on the workplace, if the employee’s job duties change relative to the hazards, plus once every 365 days. Employee training must be documented to establish that every employee received training.
Fines for non-compliance are as steep as several thousand dollars and can usually be negotiated, particularly if the practice agrees to remediate any breaches. While most practices do not attract routine inspections, violations are usually detected if an OSHA inspector arrives in response to complaints from patients or staff or if a local office is focusing on a particular sector of the health care industry.
Be sure your practice is OSHA compliant by training your employees on pictograms and the new SDSs by December 1, 2013!
If you have questions about OSHA, HIPAA or CLIA compliance? Contact our experts via email or call us at 800-635-4040.