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Industrywide studies report of an industrial hygiene survey of Kettering Medical Center, Kettering, Ohio.
Ringenburg VL; Morelli-Schroth P; Elliott LJ
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, IWS 152-18, 1986 May; :1-35
Environmental and breathing zone samples were analyzed for ethylene- oxide (75218) in the respiratory therapy area of Kettering Medical Center (SIC-8062), Kettering, Ohio in August, 1985. Work practices and engineering controls were observed. All time weighted average (TWA) mean breathing zone ethylene-oxide concentrations were below the limits of detection. The OSHA standard for ethylene-oxide is 1 part per million (ppm). Environmental ethylene-oxide concentrations ranged from non detectable to 0.81ppm. Short term environmental samples ranged up to 188.4ppm. Engineering controls included local exhaust ventilation over sterilizer doors and the pressure relief valve and floor drain, and dedicated exhaust ventilation of the sterilizers and aerators. Entry to the mechanical access areas during and for 1 to 1.5 hours after the exhaust phase of the sterilization cycle was restricted. Effective work practices included wearing cotton gloves when unloading sterilizers and pulling instead of pushing carts containing sterilized items. The authors conclude that the ethylene-oxide exposure potential at the facility could be reduced further by installing an audible and visual pressure differential alarm system and enclosing or ventilating the open, common sterilizer/sewer drain for the mechanical access room.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Survey; Field-Study; Health-care-facilities; Monitoring-systems; Ventilation; Analytical-methods; Chemical-composition; Breathing-atmospheres; Air-sampling; Region-5
Field Studies; Industry Wide
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