HHE Report No. HETA-92-273-2312, St. Vincent Hospital, Indianapolis, Indiana.
NIOSH 1993 May:15 pages
In response to a request from St. Vincent Hospital (SIC-8062), Indianapolis, Indiana, an evaluation was begun of possible exposures to ethylene-oxide (75218) (EtO) in the central processing department (CPD). The CPD contained a sterilizer room, a mechanical access room, a storage room, and a cart room. It was equipped with two EtO automatic, general purpose sterilizer units. The units and aerators were served by a dedicated local exhaust ventilation system which released EtO directly to the outdoors. The CPD was equipped with an Interscan EtO monitoring system, with four voltametric sensors used for continuous monitoring of EtO concentrations in the vicinity of the sterilizer units and mechanical access room. Monitoring results indicated that a potential health hazard existed in the sterilizer room and the mechanical room of the CPD. EtO gas generated in these rooms was measured at concentrations ranging from 0.14 to 3 parts per million (ppm). This indicated that the exhaust ventilation provided in these areas is not effective in controlling EtO at emission sources. Personal breathing zone measurements indicated that CPD workers were exposed to low concentrations of EtO. The authors conclude that workers are at risk of overexposure if they occupy areas adjacent to the sterilization process frequently and/or for prolonged periods of time.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-92-273-2312; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-5; Hospital-equipment; Occupational-exposure; Toxic-gases; Ventilation-systems; Exhaust-ventilation;
Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance;
NTIS Accession No.
Hazard Evaluations and Technical Assistance Branch, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Cincinnati, Ohio, Report No. HETA-92-273-2312, 15 pages, 27 references