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In-depth survey report: control technology for ethylene oxide sterilization in hospitals at Bronson Methodist Hospital, Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Mortimer VD Jr.; Kercher SL
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 146-13b, 1985 Nov; :1-34
A visit was made to Bronson Methodist Hospital (SIC-8062), Kalamazoo, Michigan to evaluate methods used to protect workers from exposures to ethylene-oxide (75218) (EtO). Possible drain exposure was controlled by isolating all of the sterilizer unit except for the front panel, into a ventilated recess room. Charcoal tube measurements indicated the facility had achieved excellent control of the full shift exposures with all values obtained being less than operators were low, it would be possible to reduce them even more by removing some of the impediments to the load transfer process. Rehinging the doors of the aerator to the other side would enable a smoother transfer to be made. Levels in the recess room were 100ppm near the drain, and this room must be avoided during purging and for some time following purging. However, no warnings were posted and the authors recommend that this hazardous situation be corrected. The drain exhaust should be added to the auxiliary exhaust system. A differential pressure sensor should be installed on the auxiliary ventilation system and an emergency evacuation and response plan be developed and rehearsed. Face shields and gloves should be required to protect the maintenance worker who changes the supply canisters of EtO.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Survey; Field-Study; Region-5; Laboratory-workers; Health-care-personnel; Hospital-equipment; Toxic-gases; Maintenance-workers; Control-technology
Field Studies; Control Technology
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division