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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-93-0769-2489, Southcentral Regional Public Health Laboratory, Anchorage, Alaska.
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 93-0769-2489, 1995 Feb; :1-30
In response to a request from management at the Southcentral Regional Public Health Laboratory (SIC-8071), Anchorage, Alaska, an investigation was begun into possible exposure to Mycobacterium- tuberculosis (Mtb) in the laboratory from handling incoming samples, from the preparation of acid fast bacilli (AFNB) smears, and from culturing sputum or other clinical specimens potentially containing Mtb. The facility did not have a written tuberculin skin testing (TST) surveillance program. A potential for dissemination of Mtb was noted in the ventilation system and the design of the building. Exhaust ductwork was disconnected and opened to the return air plenum. Ceiling tiles were present throughout the containment laboratory as opposed to a hard surfaced ceiling as recommended. Deficiencies were also noted in the work practices and procedures. The author concludes that a potential health hazard exists for workers at the facility due to deficiencies in the design of the laboratory and operation of the ventilation system, and the lack of appropriate respiratory protection. The author recommends that specific measures be taken to correct identified deficiencies and to meet minimum guidelines for biosafety in microbiological laboratories.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-93-0769-2489; Hazard-Confirmed; Region-10; Health-care-personnel; Laboratory-workers; Bacterial-infections; Infection-control; Ventilation-systems; Work-practices; Author Keywords: Medical Laboratories; tuberculosis; TB; Mycobacterium tuberculosis; laboratory-acquired infections; skin testing; ventilation
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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