Maintaining a Safe & Healthy Workplace
Are You Compliant With OSHA’s New Silica Rule?

Industrial Hygiene & Safety Audits

Occupational exposure assessments ensure workers are protected from workplace air contaminants. Edifice Rx’s Industrial Hygiene services focus on employee safety and employer compliance.

OSHA regulates  air contaminants in the workplace in order to protect employees from exposures to airborne chemical and particulate contaminants. A permissible exposure limit (PEL) based on a time-weighted average (TWA) of an 8-hour workday limits employee exposure to “safe levels.” OSHA has established greater “excursion limits” for short periods of time, subject to “ceiling values” for some chemicals. Many exposure limits are based on American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) standards. However, many alternative exposure limits such as Cal/OSHA PELs, the NIOSH Recommended Exposure Limits (RELs) may offer greater protection. Industry experience, scientific data, and new technology continue to result in the lowering of many exposure limits or the establishing of new ones.

Personal exposure monitoring is the “gold standard” for determining employee exposures because it is the most reliable approach for assessing how much and what type of respiratory protection is required in a given circumstance. Equally important to exposure monitoring is proper PPE selection and use. Edifice Rx can ensure your workplace is covered from head to toe.

Initial exposure monitoring is required as well as additional monitoring following process or control changes or employee exposures. See OSHA’s Law & Regulation Page  for specific contaminant laws  and regulations (i.e. lead, silica, benzene, beryllium, etc.)

Edifice Rx Provides Numerous Workplace Air Contaminant Include:

  • Volatile industrial chemicals such as benzene, ethyl alcohol, and chloroform.
  • Toxic metal dusts and fumes of lead, chromium, mercury, and others.
  • “Nuisance dusts” and other particulates such as silica
  • Biological (bacteria, mold, virus)
  • Noise
  • Etc.

Building Safety Audits
Blocked fire extinguisher in an electrical closet.

A safe workplace includes many details that are often forgotten over time. Routine Building Safety Audits are required to keep any workplace safe.

OSHA’s mission is to make workplaces safer and healthier by creating and enforcing regulations called standards in the OSH Act. The OSH Act establishes one workplace standard called the General Duty Clause. The General Duty Clause states: “Each employer shall furnish to each of his employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees.” In the OSH Act, Congress delegated OSHA to make rules further implementing the General Duty Clause.

HazCom

“The standard that gave workers the right to know, now gives them the right to understand.” – OSHA

Crucial to everyone’s safety is the proper communication of information concerning the classified hazards of chemicals to employers and employees. This includes the proper labeling of containers, safety data sheets, and employee training. Edifice Rx is ready to help employers achieve compliance and employees reach understanding.

The OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) is now aligned with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS).

Labels now contain six standardized elements: product identifier, manufacturer information, signal word, pictograms, hazard statements and precautionary statements. Material safety data sheets (MSDSs) have been replaced by safety data sheets (SDSs), the ‘M’ has been dropped. SDSs must now contain 16 sections in a specific order. Because of the HCS alignment with GHS as of June 1, 2016, employers should now be receiving updated labels and SDSs with inbound shipments of chemicals.

A Top 3 OSHA Violation
HazCom related violations consistently rank in the top 3 of OSHA’s ten most frequently cited standards list. Citations are issued in nearly all industries.

Don’t risk fines, unnecessary liability, downtime and internal disruption, negative press, damage to corporate image, or lost revenues. Edifice Rx can help with employee training and inspections.

HazCom Inspections Verify the Presence of:

  • Written HCS / HazCom Plan
  • List / Inventory of Chemicals Used in the Workplace
  • Evidence of Proper Labeling of Chemicals
  • SDS / MSDS Documents & Details about Employee Access
  • Information about Employee HazCom Training.

Construction IEQ

Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and/or Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) conditions start during construction. The best practices protect not only the future occupants but also construction workers from harmful contaminants both during and after construction. Edifice Rx can assist your project with the development of a customized Construction Indoor Air Quality (CIAQ) Management Plan that is paired with onsite training and inspections.

Indoor air quality (IAQ) is a critical component of providing a healthy and comfortable environment. The health and comfort of construction workers, occupants, and visitors are important aspects of Indoor Air Quality. IAQ is important for the following reasons:

  • Indoor air pollutants (both organic and inorganic) can “cause or contribute to short-term and long-term health problems, including asthma, respiratory tract infections, allergic reactions, headaches, nasal congestion, eye and skin irritations, coughing, sneezing, fatigue, dizziness, and nausea”.
  • Indoor air pollutants and extremes in temperature and humidity may cause discomfort or other health effects.
  • Indoor air quality problems can hasten building deterioration, create liability problems, and strain relationships amongst Tenants, Owners, Construction Manager, Subcontractors, and Insurance Companies.

Edifice Rx can establish a Construction Indoor Air Quality (CIAQ) Management Plan for your project to define practices that will reduce IAQ problems resulting from construction or renovation and to promote the comfort and well-being of construction workers and building occupants. The plan seeks to reduce construction worker exposure to air pollutants, avert the collection of air pollutants in or on building systems, and prevent air pollutant migration into occupied spaces.

Cloud based data-logging provides real-time notifications and response to changing IEQ conditions as well as allowing for analysis of long-term trends, ensuring maintenance of acceptable air quality levels and protection of occupied areas as recommended by governmental and professional organizations.

 

USP <797>

Edifice Rx provides the proper design and execution of an environmental sampling plan that is a central component of USP <797>.

Millions of medications are compounded each year in pharmacies to meet the unique needs of patients. Medications that are required to be sterile include those administered through injection, intravenous infusion (IV), intraocular (injection in the eye) or intrathecal (injection in the spine) are compounded in clean rooms.

Understanding the inherent risks in sterile compounding environments and incorporating established standards are essential for patient safety. Compounded drugs without the guidance of standards may be sub-potent, super potent, or contaminated, exposing patients to significant risk of adverse events or even death.

USP develops standards for preparing compounded sterile drugs to help ensure patient benefit and reduce risks such as contamination, infection or incorrect dosing.

USP General Chapter <797>  includes a number of requirements, including responsibilities of compounding personnel, training, facilities, environmental monitoring, and storage and testing of finished preparations.

A good environmental sampling program will not only allow a pharmaceutical compounding laboratory to know whether or not it is within the recommended action levels of USP <797>, but also provides valuable information for determining sources of potential contamination and counteracting them.

USP 797 Environmental Sampling Includes:

  • Nonviable airborne particle sampling
  • Airborne bacteria and fungi
  • Viable surface sampling
  • Gloved fingertip sampling
  • Media-fill testing (also called aseptic manipulation testing).