| FAQ - Diseases and Disease Agents - 2015
Do all dental offices have to offer the Hepatitis B vaccine free of charge to employees who may come in contact with blood & bodily fluids?
Ask OSAP would like to reference Infection Control and Management of Hazardous Materials for the Dental Team which states as follows:
The availability of safe and effective vaccines for hepatitis B is fortunate. Because no successful medical treatment exists to cure this disease, prevention is of paramount importance. Chapter 9 presents details on the vaccines and the vaccination series. The vaccines are strongly recommended for all members of the dental team. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration of the U.S. Department of Labor actually requires dentist-employers to offer the hepatitis vaccine series free of charge to office staff who may have any potential for exposure to blood or saliva. The requirement applies to employees in all health care and other professions in which body fluid exposure is possible. 1
OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogen’s standard states:
The employer shall make available the hepatitis B vaccine and vaccination series to all employees who have occupational exposure, and post-exposure evaluation and follow-up to all employees who have had an exposure incident.
The employer shall ensure that all medical evaluations and procedures including the hepatitis B vaccine and vaccination series and post-exposure evaluation and follow-up, including prophylaxis, are:
Made available at no cost to the employee;
Made available to the employee at a reasonable time and place;
Performed by or under the supervision of a licensed physician or by or under the supervision of another licensed healthcare professional; and
Provided according to recommendations of the U.S. Public Health Service current at the time these evaluations and procedures take place, except as specified by this paragraph (f). 2
OSHA also states the following on its website:
The standard requires employers to offer the vaccination series to all workers who have occupational exposure. Examples of workers who may have occupational exposure include, but are not limited to, healthcare workers, emergency responders, morticians, first-aid personnel, correctional officers and laundry workers in hospitals and commercial laundries that service healthcare or public safety institutions. The vaccine and vaccination must be offered at no cost to the worker and at a reasonable time and place. 3
1) Miller CH. Infection Control and Management of Hazardous Materials for the Dental Team, 5th edition. Elsevier/Mosby Publishers. Page 49.
2) US Department of Labor – Occupational Safety and Health Administration. 1910.1030 Bloodborne pathogens Standard. https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=10051 Accessed on February 24, 2015.
3) US Department of Labor – Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Hepatitis B Vaccination Protection. https://www.osha.gov/OshDoc/data_BloodborneFacts/bbfact05.html Accessed on February 24, 2015.