Research occupational health program training
OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH RISK ASSESSMENT GUIDE FOR IBC RESEARCH
This is intended as a guide for principal investigators, IBC members, and others to help determine what occupational health
and safety requirements might
apply to individuals who are listed on studies submitted for IBC approval.
All persons working with hazardous biological agents must be appropriately trained on the hazards and
the appropriate safety measures. It is the responsibility of the PI to ensure the staff working on his/her IBC protocol is
properly trained on hazards associated with the materials they work with. Contact OHS at (612) 626-5008
email aif you are a PI and need help developing training for your lab staff or have been asked to
work with hazardous biological agents without proper safety training.
2. UNDERLYING HEALTH CONDITIONS:
Certain underlying health conditions can significantly increase the risk
for adverse health outcomes from exposure to biohazardous agents. Occupational health and safety experts are available to answer questions or concerns from employees about health risks in their work environment, and can act as liaisons between employees and their respective supervisors or principal investigators to ensure that all risks and/or concerns are appropriately addressed.
Exposure to certain biological agents may adversely affect the health of mother and fetus. If
pregnancy is possible or planned during the period that work with infectious agents is conducted, it is
recommended that an employee discuss this with the Occupational Health Provider (OHP) and/or her primary
care provider. Contact OHS at (612) 626-5008
or by email aif you have questions.
b. Immune Suppression
: Employees with significant immunosuppression or immune disease may experience
an increased risk of adverse health effects if they are exposed to certain infectious agents. For instance, employees with HIV infection, with other immunosuppressive conditions, or who are on medication (e.g. chemotherapy) that suppresses the immune system may need to take special precautions. Therefore, employees who are potentially immunosuppressed and engaged in laboratory work with infectious agents must inform the OHP of their medical condition. The OHP is available for questions regarding exposure risk issues and potential harm associated with the biological hazards in the laboratory in relation to the individual’s immunosuppression.
Examples of immunosuppressive treatment: 1. Oral steroids (e.g. prednisone, solumedrol) 2. Chemotherapy agents (e.g. cyclophosphamide, cisplatin) 3. Immunosuppression or post-transplant medication (e.g. immuran, cytoxan, methotrexate,
4. Interferon 5. Biological agents or antibodies which cause immunosuppression (e.g. adalimumab, infliximab,
6. Radiation treatment 7. Medications affecting tumor necrosis factor (TNF) such as Enbrel or Rituxan
Examples of immunosuppressive conditions: 1. HIV infection 2. Cancer, receiving chemotherapy drugs or radiation treatment 3. Transplant recipients
UNDERLYING HEALTH CONDITIONS
☐ Work involving sharps (E.G. needles, scalpels, etc.)
Note: Final decision regarding OHS requirements will be made by the Office of Occupational Health and
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