– Chemical Safety in the Healthcare Industry
Keeping medical professionals safe from chemical exposure
Workplace exposure monitoring is important no matter the industry. For workers on the front line of the medical industry, it can be a vital practice. When it comes to the business of keeping people healthy, maintaining safe practices is of utmost importance. In the age of modern medicine there are a multitude of uses of toxic chemicals from preservatives containing glutaraldehyde and formaldehyde to dental amalgamations containing mercury. There are a wide variety of applications in which medical professionals have the potential to be exposed to hazardous chemicals. SafeAir and ChromAir badges help to ensure medical professionals are safe when working with toxic chemicals
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To answer the question of how fast SafeAir badges will react, we will need to know the concentration of the chemical present in the environment as well as the overall time of the exposure. For example, the SafeAir TDI/MDI badge has an initial indication dose sensitivity of 5 ppb●hr, meaning at a concentration of 5 ppb of TDI, this badge will indicate exposure after being in the environment for one hour.
– HOW WE DO IT –
Medical laboratories use formaldehyde in an aqueous solution known as formalin. It is often mixed with other chemicals to make embalming fluids or preserving solutions. Glutaraldehyde is used as a tissue fixative in some electron and light microscopy procedures to preserve tissue. Laboratory personnel and other medical professionals risk glutaraldehyde or formaldehyde exposure when preparing, mixing or using these preservative solutions. SafeAir and ChromAir badges can help protect employees when working with toxic chemicals like formaldehyde and glutaraldehyde.
Sterilant / Disinfectant
Glutaraldehyde is used to sterilize and disinfect heat-sensitive medical, surgical, and dental equipment. It is found in a multitude of disinfectant products such as Cidex, Aldesen, Hopex, Sporicidin, Omnicide, Matricide, and Wavicide. Cold sterilization procedures often require medical staff to agitate glutaraldehyde solutions, running the risk of glutaraldehyde exposure. These solutions are most commonly used in gastroenterology, cardiology, dialysis, endoscopy, surgical, dental and intensive care units. Specific disinfectant applications of glutaraldehyde include sterilization of respiratory therapy equipment, bronchoscopes, physical therapy whirlpool tubs, surgical instruments, anesthesia equipment parts, x-ray tabletops, dialyzers, and dialysis treatment equipment. Hospital staff working in close proximity to these numerous applications have the potential for glutaraldehyde exposure. ChromAir badges help to ensure employees are safe by detecting glutaraldehyde before hazardous doses are reached.
Mercury is used in the production of various medications, ointments, dental fillings, and contact lenses. It is also contained in medical instruments such as thermometers and sphygmomanometers (blood pressure monitors). Healthcare employees who develop x-rays use hardening agents containing glutaraldehyde in the drying cycle of x-ray film processing. Healthcare workers who come in close proximity to toxic chemicals such as mercury and glutaraldehyde risk occupational exposure. ChromAir and SafeAir badges help to ensure employees are safe from chemical exposure when working with hazardous solutions.
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