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In-depth survey report: control technology for ethylene oxide sterilization in hospitals at St. Francis/St. George Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio.
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 146-17b, 1985 Jul; :1-30
An in depth survey of control technology for reducing exposure during ethylene-oxide (75218) sterilization was conducted at Saint Francis/Saint George Hospital (SIC-8062), Cincinnati, Ohio, in January, 1985. Personal and area air samples were analyzed for ethylene-oxide. Engineering controls consisted of isolating the sterilizer, local exhaust ventilation above the sterilizer door and exit drain, and general ventilation. All full shift samples collected in the clean room averaged less than 0.05 part per million (ppm). Samples collected above the sterilizer cabinet in the decontamination area averaged 0.3ppm. Short term samples collected during load transfer operations averaged 1.9 and 2.4ppm for the operator and a location above the sterilizer door, respectively. Proper work practices for the employees were outlined in a procedure/policy manual. Based on observing the load transfer operation, the operators followed these procedures. The author commends the facility for a very sound program of ethylene-oxide control. Decontamination room personnel could be at risk in case of an inadvertent release of ethylene-oxide from the sterilizer safety valve or other leaks in the sterilizer cabinet. This condition could be easily remedied by enclosing the top of the cabinet. Environmental monitoring is also recommended.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Survey; Control-technology; Medical-facilities; Monitoring-systems; Air-sampling; Quantitative-analysis; Field-Study; Ventilation; Voltage-regulation; Analytical-models; Temperature-effects; 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