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Preliminary survey report, control technology for ethylene oxide sterilization in hospitals at Bronson Methodist Hospital, Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, ECTB 146-13a, 1984 Nov; :1-16
A preliminary survey of control technology for reducing ethylene- oxide (75218) exposures during sterilizing operations at Bronson Methodist Hospital (SIC-8062), Kalamazoo, Michigan was conducted in July, 1984. Ethylene-oxide gas sterilization operations were conducted in the Central Services and Surgery Departments. Only the General Services Department was surveyed. Engineering controls consisted of isolation, maintaining the room in which the sterilizer was located under negative pressure, and local exhaust and general ventilation. Preventive maintenance on the sterilizer was performed 4 times a year. Hazard information and operating instructions were posted near the sterilizer. Employees were instructed on the hazards of ethylene-oxide exposure and its proper handling. Employees were encouraged to wear protective cotton gloves or use a towel when transferring a load from the sterilizer to the aerator. Environmental monitoring for ethylene-oxide was performed every 6 months. A detection/monitoring system set to alarm when ethylene- oxide concentrations reached 20 parts per million (ppm) was in place. An auxiliary exhaust system was also triggered when ethylene- oxide concentrations reached 20ppm. The author concludes that the General Services Department of the hospital appears to have a sound program for controlling ethylene-oxide exposures. An indepth survey of the facility is recommended.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Survey; Control-technology; Field-Study; Medical-facilities; Toxic-vapors; Fumigants; Ventilation-systems; Industrial-hygiene; Safety-clothing; Protective-clothing; Region-5
Field Studies; Control Technology
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division