Oncology nurses not adhering to safe handling guidelines of antineoplastic agents

the ONA take:

According to a new study funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and published online in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, researchers have found that healthcare workers do not always follow recommended safe handling practices for the administration of antineoplastic drugs in healthcare settings.

 

Of 2,100 oncology nurses and other healthcare personnel, 80% do not wear two pairs of chemotherapy gloves and 15% do not even wear a single pair during the administration of antineoplastic agents to patients. In addition, 42% do not always wear a nonabsorbent gown with closed front and tight-fitting cuffs. Of those surveyed, 12% report taking home potentially contaminated clothing and 4% report skin contact with an antineoplastic agent.

 

The researchers suggest that better communication surrounding the risks of not following the best practice recommendations put forth by authoritative safe handling guidelines. Healthcare workers and oncology nurses should be fully aware of the hazards associated with not following these guidelines and the precautionary measures that can be used to minimize exposure to antineoplastic agents.


Healthcare workers do not always follow recommended safe handling practices for antineoplastic drugs.

A new National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) study, published online in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, found that recommended safe handling practices for workers who administer antineoplastic drugs in healthcare settings are not always followed. Results are derived from the 2011 Health and Safety Practices Survey of Healthcare Workers, the largest federally-sponsored survey of healthcare workers in the U.S., which addresses safety and health practices relative to use of hazardous chemicals.

This paper presents findings on current administrative and engineering control practices, personal protective equipment (PPE), and barriers to using recommended PPE during administration of antineoplastic drugs by nearly 2,100 oncology nurses and other healthcare personnel who completed a module addressing antineoplastic drug administration.
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