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§16-36-2. Needlestick injury prevention rules.

(a) On or before July 1, 2000, the director shall, with the advice and cooperation of the advisory committee established under this article, propose rules for legislative approval in accordance with the provisions of article three, chapter twenty-nine-a of this code requiring facilities, as a condition of licensure certification or operation, to minimize the risk of needlestick and sharps injuries to health care workers. In developing the rules the director shall take into consideration the most recent guidelines of the occupational safety and health administration that relate to prevention of needlestick and sharps injuries.

(b) The rules shall include, but not be limited to, the following provisions:

(1) A requirement that facilities utilize needleless systems or other engineering controls designed to prevent needlestick or sharps injuries, except in cases where the facility can demonstrate circumstances in which the technology does not promote employee or patient safety or interferes with a medical procedure. Those circumstances shall be specified by the facility and shall include, but not be limited to, circumstances where the technology is medically contraindicated or not more effective than alternative measures used by the facility to prevent exposure incidents: Provided, That no specific device may be mandated;

(2) A requirement that information concerning exposure incidents be recorded in a sharps injury log, to be kept within the facility and reported annually to the director. Information recorded in the log shall contain, at a minimum:

(A) The date and time of the exposure incident;

(B) The type and brand of sharp involved in the incident; and

(C) A description of the exposure incident which shall at a minimum include:

(i) The job classification of the exposed worker;

(ii) The department or work area where the exposure incident occurred;

(iii) The procedure that the exposed worker was performing at the time of the incident;

(iv) How the incident occurred;

(v) The body part involved in the exposure incident;

(vi) If the sharp had engineered sharps injury protection, whether the protective mechanism was activated and whether the injury occurred before the protective mechanism was activated, during activation of the mechanism or after activation of the mechanism, if applicable; and

(vii) Any suggestions by the injured employee as to whether or how protective mechanisms or work practice control could be utilized to prevent such injuries;

(3) A provision for maintaining a list of existing needleless systems and needles and sharps with engineered injury protections. The director shall make the list available to assist employers in complying with the requirements of the standards adopted in accordance with this article; and

(4) Any additional provisions consistent with the purposes of this article, including, but not limited to, training and educational requirements, measures to increase vaccinations, strategic placement of sharps containers as close to the work area as is practical and increased use of protective equipment.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2017 Regular Session
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