Recommendations Reviewed for Working with Hazardous Drugs

by Toby Roberts on January 5, 2010

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is examining evidence to issue recommendations that health care workers that are trying to conceive, pregnant, or breastfeeding be relocated to areas that limit contact with potentially hazardous drugs.  The organization has completed the collection of information and suggestions from industry workers and employers and is currently in the review process.

NIOSH acknowledges that moving employees might be difficult in smaller pharmacy settings but is convinced that the potential for side effects warrants the suggestion.  They cite the increase in negative events such as miscarriage and stillbirths for nurses and pharmacy workers as evidence for the necessity of examination of the guidelines.

They note also that the guides for those “trying to conceive” would also apply to male employees. NIOSH notes that the information collected will likely take around two years to translate in suggested guidelines. There are no plans at this time to draft laws or regulations that employers are required to follow.

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