Maintaining a Safe Environment of Care – conformance to Joint Commission Standards and avoiding accreditation citations Reply

Joint Commission accreditation is intended to ensure that hospitals provide the highest level of performance and service to their patients. The Joint Commission’s accreditation process seeks to help organizations identify and resolve problems and to inspire them to improve the safety and quality of care and services provided. The process focuses on systems critical to the safety and the quality of care, treatment, and services.

Joint Commission publishes a list of the top deficiency citations about every 6 months. The top ten citations for the first half of 2014 were recently highlighted in the December 2014 issue of the New England Healthcare Engineers’ Society (NEHES) newsletter. One of the top ten citations is specifically related to management of hazardous materials and waste. The Joint Commission Standards include Environment of Care Standard EC.02.02.01, the management of hazardous materials and waste. This standard includes several elements of performance to ensure that hospitals are maintaining a safe environment for their patients, health care professionals, and support staff. Hospitals must be able to demonstrate that they do the following:

– Maintain a written, current inventory of hazardous materials and waste that it uses, stores, or
generates
– Have written procedures, including the use of precautions and personal protective equipment, to
follow in response to hazardous material and waste spills or exposures
– Implement its procedures in response to hazardous material and waste spills or exposures
– Minimize risks associated with selecting, handling, storing, transporting, using, and disposing
of hazardous chemicals, radioactive materials (radiation, x-rays), hazardous energy sources
(lasers, MRIs), and hazardous gases and vapors
– Minimize risk associated with disposing of hazardous medications
– Monitor levels of hazardous gases and vapors to determine that they are in safe range
– Have the permits, licenses, manifests, and MSDSs required for managing hazardous materials and
waste
– Label hazardous materials and waste, identifying the contents and hazard warnings

Demonstrating conformance to this standard includes compliance with several regulations, covering a diverse range of hazardous materials and hazardous waste sources, or “streams.” In addition, there is overlap among the many applicable regulations: OSHA, EPA, DOT, NRC, DOE, state regulations, and local bylaws.

In order to reduce risk, hospitals should consider getting a third party inspection, or audit, to assist on both compliance with applicable hazardous materials and hazardous waste regulations, and conformance to the Joint Commission Environment of Care standard. If you would like to find out more, please contact CAPACCIO’s William Potochniak, PE, at wpotochniak@capaccio.com or Jill Vernes, CHMM, TURP, at jvernes@capaccio.com.

Massachusetts Hoisting Machinery Regulation Revision Becomes Final Reply

On November 8, 2013, the Massachusetts Department of Public Safety (DPS) published the hoisting machinery regulation, 520 CMR 6.00. The changes to the regulation reflect 2010 changes to the hoisting law, Massachusetts General Laws (MGL) Chapter 146, Section 53, and comment from the July 8, 2013 public hearing.

520 CMR 6.00 requires that all operators of hoisting machinery complete an application and pass a test to obtain a license from the DPS. 520 CMR 6.00 is applicable to all hoisting machinery, including forklifts used on private or public property where the height of the lift exceeds 10 feet or the weight of the load exceeds 500 pounds.

The regulation includes an exemption of the Massachusetts hoisting license requirement for all operators if the company has a training program approved by the DPS and complies with the following requirements:

• A supervisory employee(s) who holds a hoisting license for the equipment being used must be on-site at all times during operation

• The company training program must be approved by the DPS biennially

• Authorized operators must be issued a company license that includes a picture of the employee, a list of hoisting machinery the employee is qualified to operate, and the name and signature of the supervisor who holds a license to operate that equipment. Employees can only be trained and certified to operate the specific equipment for which the supervisory employee holds a license issued by the DPS.

The application form for approval of an in-service training program can be found here:
http://www.mass.gov/eopss/docs/dps/engineering/appl-eng/form-approval-in-service-training-program-.pdf

The regulation incorporates two new license classifications; Class 1D – general industrial warehouse forklift equipment and Class 2D – Compact Hoisting Machinery. Any hoisting machinery licensee who holds a license with a Class 1 grade greater than 1D may also operate general industrial warehouse forklift equipment.

A link to the final regulation can be found here:
http://www.mass.gov/eopss/consumer-prot-and-bus-lic/license-type/hoisting/hoisting.html

For more information on how we can help with your hoisting program, please contact Colleen Walsh at 508.970.0033 ext. 129 or cwalsh@capaccio.com.

For a complete listing of CAPACCIO’s environmental, health and safety services, please visit: http://www.capaccio.com/Handouts/ServiceInfo/Capaccio_Services_Health_Safety_IH.pdf.

CAPACCIO assists Harvard University with EH&S training program Reply

Did you know?

CAPACCIO assists several colleges, universities, and schools with a variety of environmental, health and safety (EH&S) and engineering services. Recently, we assisted Harvard University (Harvard) with developing a series of training modules for their employees across campus.

Harvard was planning to launch a new EH&S training program that included creating a variety of job safety trainings via web-based modules. Although Harvard already had existing EH&S training modules, they wanted to revise and update them so they could be more effective and applicable to personnel.

CAPACCIO was chosen to revise and update a series of modules for a variety of job positions on the campus. The revisions included focusing on the tasks involved with each position from an EH&S perspective. This helped engage personnel on the EH&S requirements that affected them, shortened the training time, and placed the focus on what was most important to keep personnel safe.

To begin the project, CAPACCIO participated in a project kickoff meeting with Harvard’s EH&S staff to discuss the scope and objectives, review the existing materials and the initial desired changes. The first program CAPACCIO developed was geared toward new employees, who were all required to have safety training. CAPACCIO also created a series of modules to use as a guideline and proceeded to assist Harvard with modifying the rest so they all had the same look and feel.

To accompany each slide/module, CAPACCIO wrote the narrative script and provided the recorded narration. CAPACCIO created an audition tape consisting of three Capaccio employee voice-over choices (male and female) for Harvard to choose from to be the “Voice of Harvard.”

To ensure the employees were properly trained and understood the material, CAPACCIO also created a quiz for each module with a series of multiple-choice questions. Harvard was able to incorporate the quizzes into their online training system so they could track quizzes taken and determine successful completion based on quiz scores.

CAPACCIO’s vast experience with developing and implementing EH&S programs for our clients along with the related program documentation and training materials was a plus. Our staff of professional EH&S engineers, scientists, certified safety professionals, and certified industrial hygienists were all able to provide the necessary technical information to ensure the training programs were accurate and comprehensive.

To learn more about the vast array of services CAPACCIO can provide for colleges and universities, please see our service sheet, http://www.capaccio.com/Handouts/ServiceInfo/Capaccio_Services_CollegesUniversities.pdf

For more information on this project or if you are interested in speaking to us about your training program, please contact Bill Potochniak at 508-970-0033 ext. 134 or wpotochniak@capaccio.com.

Hoisting Regulations Update Reply

On July 8, 2013 the Massachusetts Department of Public Safety (DPS) held a public hearing on proposed changes to the hoisting machinery regulation, 520 CMR 6.00. Many of the proposed changes reflect 2010 changes to the hoisting law, Massachusetts General Laws (MGL) Chapter 146, Section 53 and public comment from the December 8, 2012, public hearing.

520 CMR 6.00 requires that all operators of hoisting machinery complete an application and pass a test to obtain a license from the DPS. 520 CMR 6.00 is applicable to all hoisting machinery, including forklifts used on private or public property where the height of the lift exceeds 10 feet or the weight of the load exceeds 500 pounds.

The revised regulation includes an exemption of the MA hoisting license requirement for all operators if the company has a training program approved by the DPS and complies with the following requirements:

• A supervisory employee(s) who holds a hoisting license for the equipment being used must be on-site at all times during operation
• The company training program must be approved by the DPS biennially
• Authorized operators must be issued a company license that includes a picture of the employee, a list of hoisting machinery the employee is qualified to operate, and the name of signature of the supervisor who holds a license to operate that equipment. Employees can only be trained and certified to operate the specific equipment for which the supervisory employee holds a license issued by the DPS.

A facility seeking DPS approval of its training program must submit the following:

• A completed application form
• Copy of company curriculum and training materials (must include a classroom and practical component)
• A list of employees with hoisting license
• A list of type of equipment in use

The application forms referenced in the proposed regulation are not currently available from the DPS. At the public hearing, the DPS representative stated that all required materials will be posted on the DPS after the regulation is finalized. DPS did not provide an estimated date of when the proposed regulation will become final but Capaccio will post any updates on our blog once they are available.

The proposed regulation can be found here: http://www.mass.gov/eopss/docs/dps/engineering/inf-eng/520-cmr-6-redline-apr13.pdf

CAPACCIO can assist with bringing your company into compliance with this and other health and safety related programs. Please review our list of health and safety services.

For more information, contact Colleen Walsh at 508.970.0033 extension 129 or cwalsh@capaccio.com.