Missouri Professional Licensing Defense Attorney Talks About Complying With OSHA Standards Can Help Clinicians Avoid Professional Discipline

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) promulgated guidelines for safety in clinical offices. OSHA operates on the simple premise that employers have an obligation to provide their employees with a safe work environment. Issues about workplace safety can arise during the course of treatment of a patient. It is important to recognize the potential occupational pitfalls a doctor, dentist, or another clinician must avoid maintaining the safety of their employees and patients as well. You could face professional licensing discipline if you fail to satisfy OSHA’s standards for clinical practice if the violation compromises patient safety. Kansas and Missouri professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger zealously advocates for healthcare professionals and other professional licensees facing professional discipline.

While compliance with OSHA regulations appears on its face to be onerous, the regulations purport to provide a valuable service for healthcare practitioners. Following OSHA guidelines permits employers to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses. Doing so keeps overhead down while promoting quality patient care by maintaining continuity of employees. Reducing workplace injuries and illness enhances employee morale because employees know that their employer wants them to be physically safe in their work environment.  Every employee is owed the right to work in a safe environment. That means the temporary medical assistant to the longest tenured physician enjoys the right to a safe work environment.

OSHA recommends establishing an office or clinic protocols that employers and employees must follow to ensure a safe work environment. OSHA’s regulations apply to every employer, no matter the number. There are no exceptions. To maintain a safe workplace, OSHA recommends:

  • establishing office protocols, policies, and procedures that comply with OSHA regulations;
  • identifying safety hazards such as biohazards, radiation hazards, chemical, physical, ergonomic, and psychological hazards as well;
  • taking steps to protect workers from infection from various sources;
  • being certain to store medicines securely and protect workers from medical waste contamination;
  • hanging required OSHA posters and required notices, and
  • providing training to employees regarding clinical safety measures.

OSHA requires employers to make sure labels are appropriately affixed when necessary. Additionally, fire exits must be designated and map provided to the nearest exit. Furthermore, steps must be taken to protect staff members from radiation exposure from X-ray machines, MRI’s, and CT-scan machines.

One issue clinicians must not overlook is the electrical requirements OSHA promulgated. OSHA has strict guidelines for electrical safety. If the office uses gasses, for instance, “laughing gas” in a dentist’s office, then the office must contain the necessary wiring to prevent fire and explosions.

Employers should not take these requirements lightly. Following OSHA’s mandates can save money in the long run. OSHA recommends that employers communicate with their subordinates a desire to have a safe workplace. Additionally, employers should establish clear goals and objectives. The goals should be measurable, realistic, and attainable. One way to accomplish that mission is to assign tasks to particular employees and put them in charge of a particular aspect of the clinic’s safety plan. Employers should allow time for employees to familiarize themselves with the safety plans issued by the clinic. Not allowing the necessary time for employees to become familiar with the safety requirements of their office will be counterproductive and provide a disincentive for employees to follow the safety protocols of the medical office. Finally, the employer should demand compliance with the safety programs define by their employer.

Professional Licensing Attorney Available To Assist

Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Defense Attorney Danielle Sanger is an aggressive advocate for the professional licensee. If you are facing the prospect of losing your professional license, call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule an appointment.