| FAQ - Diseases and Disease Agents - Archived Through 2012
What does OSHA require in annual training for bloodborne pathogens?
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Bloodborne Pathogens Standard requires that all employees with occupational exposure receive training at the time of initial assignment and at least annually thereafter. Employees must also receive additional training when changes such as modification of tasks or procedures or institution of new tasks or procedures affect the employee's occupational exposure.
The elements of the training program must include, at a minimum:
- An accessible copy of the regulatory text of the current standard and an explanation of its contents;
- A general explanation of the epidemiology and symptoms of bloodborne diseases;
- An explanation of the modes of transmission of bloodborne pathogens;
- An explanation of the employer's exposure control plan and the means by which the employee can obtain a copy of the written plan;
- An explanation of the appropriate methods for recognizing tasks and other activities that may involve exposure to blood and other potentially infectious materials;
- An explanation of the use and limitations of methods that will prevent or reduce exposure including appropriate engineering controls, work practices, and personal protective equipment;
- Information on the types, proper use, location, removal, handling, decontamination and disposal of personal protective equipment;
- An explanation of the basis for selection of personal protective equipment;
- Information on the hepatitis B vaccine, including information on its efficacy, safety, method of administration, the benefits of being vaccinated, and that the vaccine and vaccination will be offered free of charge;
- Information on the appropriate actions to take and persons to contact in an emergency involving blood or other potentially infectious materials;
- An explanation of the procedure to follow if an exposure incident occurs, including the method of reporting the incident and the medical follow-up that will be made available;
- Information on the post-exposure evaluation and follow-up that the employer is required to provide for the employee following an exposure incident;
- An explanation of the signs and labels and/or color coding required by paragraph (g)(1); and
- An opportunity for interactive questions and answers with the person conducting the training session.
The standard also requires that the person conducting the training be knowledgeable in the subject matter, and how the information relates to that workplace. The trainer also must provide an opportunity for questions and answers.
In addition to these OSHA requirements, OSAP recommends contacting your state's Board of Dental Examiners(2) to determine if it has any additional requirements for relicensure.
1) OSHA. 29CFR 1910.1030. Bloodborne Pathogens, Final Rule. Available at http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=10051
2) The Dental Student Dental Students: The Dental Students Network. State and Regional Dental Practice Boards. Available at http://forums.studentdoctor.net/forumdisplay.php?f=55.