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Bloodborne PathogensOSHA 29 CFR 1910.1030

University of Kentucky

Department of Biological Safety

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The Bloodborne Pathogens Standard covers all occupational exposures to blood or other potentially infectious materials and serves to provide methods to protect workers from exposure to bloodborne pathogens.

For a copy of the standard:

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How does the Bloodborne Pathogen Standard apply to my research lab?

  • Work with human blood or tissue

  • Work with human cell lines

  • Work with viral vectors derived from bloodborne viruses, Lentiviral vectors

  • Use of infectious agents that are bloodborne pathogens, HIV, HBV, Cytomegalovirus, Malaria, Leptospirosis, Herpesviruses, Syphilis

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Definitions research lab?

  • Blood:

    • Human blood,

    • Human blood components,

    • And products made from human blood.

    • This includes plasma and products derived from plasma such as human serum albumin (HSA).

    • This definition also includes human umbilical cord blood cells (hUCB).

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Definitions research lab?

  • Bloodborne Pathogens:

    • Pathogenic microorganisms that are present in human blood and can cause disease in humans.

    • These pathogens include, but are not limited to, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV).

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Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) research lab?

  • A retrovirus that causes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) by infecting helper T cells of the immune system.

  • HIV is transmitted through direct contact with infected material, such as a needlestick injury.

  • Initial symptoms of HIV may be a mild flu-like illness developing within 1 to 6 weeks of exposure.

  • After a latent period which may last several years, AIDS develops and the disease is characterized by the loss of T cell function and prevalence of opportunistic infections

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Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) research lab?

The probability of being infected following an

exposure to a known HIV positive source is

only about 0.4% and there are only 5 reported

cases of laboratory acquired HIV infections.

If the probability of infection is so low, why are all these precautions recommended?

While the onset of AIDS may be delayed through drug therapy and opportunistic infections may be treatable, AIDS is at this time incurable and fatal.

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Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) research lab?

  • A member of the Hepadnaviridae, HBV is a DNA virus that affects primarily the liver.

  • HBV is transmitted by percutaneous and mucosal exposures to blood and other potentially infectious material.

  • Initial infection may have few or no symptoms but can develop into a chronic infection leading to cirrhosis, chronic active hepatitis, and liver cancer.

  • Nearly 1/3 of the world’s population has been or is actively infected with HBV. This high prevalence leads to great potential for infection following exposure to blood or other potentially infectious material (OPIM).

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Definitions research lab?

  • Contaminated Sharps:

    • Any contaminated object that can penetrate the skin including, but not limited to, needles, scalpels, broken glass, broken capillary tubes, and exposed ends of dental wires.

    • This includes serological pipets and pipet tips contaminated with other potentially infected materials such as human cell and tissue cultures.

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Definitions research lab?

  • Engineering Controls:

    • Controls that isolate or remove the bloodborne pathogens hazard from the workplace.

    • These may include sharps disposal containers, self-sheathing needles, or needleless systems.

Fisher Scientific

15-353-25, 15-353-24

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Safer Sharps research lab?

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Definitions research lab?

  • Exposure Incident:

    • A specific eye, mouth, other mucous membrane, non-intact skin, or parenteral contact (needle-stick) with blood or other potentially infectious materials that results from the performance of an employee’s duties.

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Preventing Exposure research lab?

One way to prevent exposure to bloodborne pathogens is through the practice of universal precautions.

Universal precautions are an approach to infection control in which all human blood and certain human body fluids are treated as if known to be infectious for HIV, HBV, and other bloodborne pathogens.

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Definitions research lab?

  • Other Potentially Infectious Material (OPIM)

    • The following human fluids are considered potentially infectious:

      • Semen

      • Vaginal Secretions

      • Cerebrospinal Fluid

      • Pleural Fluid

      • Pericardial Fluid

      • Peritoneal Fluid

      • Amniotic Fluid

      • Saliva in dental procedures

      • Any body fluid visibly contaminated with blood

      • All body fluids when it is difficult or impossible to differentiate between body fluids

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Definitions- OPIM Continued research lab?

  • Other Potentially Infectious Material (OPIM)

    • Any unfixed tissue or organ (other than skin) from a human (living or dead)

    • HIV-containing cell or tissue cultures, organ cultures

    • HIV- or HBV-containing culture medium or other solutions

    • Blood, organs or other tissues from experimental animals infected with HIV or HBV

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Definitions research lab?

  • Regulated Medical Waste:

    • Liquid or semi-liquid blood or OPIM

    • Contaminated items that would release blood or OPIM in a liquid or semi-liquid state if compressed

    • Items that are caked with dried blood or OPIM and are capable of releasing these materials during handling

    • Contaminated sharps

    • Pathological and microbiological wastes containing blood or OPIM

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Engineering and Work Practice Controls research lab?

  • The equipment and procedures that are used to minimize or eliminate employee exposure to bloodborne pathogens.

  • Any exposure risk remaining after the institution of engineering and work practice controls shall be mitigated via the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Fisher Scientific 14-827-109

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Engineering and Work Practice Controls research lab?

  • Handwashing facilities should be readily available for employee use.

  • Hands should be washed after removing gloves and after any exposure incident.

  • Waterless hand sanitizer can be utilized if handwashing facilities are not available but hands should be washed with soap and water as soon as feasible.

  • For more information on hand hygiene:

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Engineering and Work Practice Controls research lab?

  • Examples:

    • Performing human cell culture in a Biological Safety Cabinet.

    • Discarding used needles in an approved sharps container without recapping the needle.

    • Performing procedures involving blood or OPIM in a manner which minimizes splashes and generation of aerosols.

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Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) research lab?

  • All employees should have access to PPE that is task appropriate and the correct size.

  • Employee training on PPE should include:

    • Location

    • Proper Use

    • Proper Disposal

    • Decontamination Procedures for Reusable Equipment

    • Selection of Proper PPE for the Task

  • PPE may include, but is not limited to, gloves, gowns, lab coats, face shields, and goggles.

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Recognizing Exposure Potential research lab?

To evaluate the effectiveness of engineering and work practice controls and PPE, you need to assess the risk of the task being performed.

  • Potential for needlestick?

    • Example, tail vein injections of tumor cells into rodents.

  • Potential for splash?

    • Example, vortexing human cell lines.

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Waste Disposal research lab?

  • Sharps

    • Approved red sharps container with biohazard symbol

      (UK Supply Center 320144)

    • Close and decontaminate the outside when full

    • Medical Center custodial staff or Environmental Management (323-6280) will collect for disposal by Medical Waste Contractor

Hazardous Waste Pick-up Request

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Waste Disposal research lab?

  • Human blood or other body fluids and pathological specimens and containers grossly contaminated with human blood (ex. blood bags)

    • Dispose of in red, biohazard labeled waste bags in red, lidded waste containers

    • Medical Center custodial staff or Environmental Management (323-6280) will collect for disposal by Medical Waste Contractor when full.

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Waste Disposal research lab?

  • Human Cell and Tissue Culture Waste

    • Disposable tissue culture supplies and solid waste

      • Collect in an orange or clear autoclave bag labeled with biohazard symbol

      • Autoclave and dispose in regular trash

    • Serological Pipets, Pipet Tips, Contaminated Broken Glassware

      • Collect in a plastic-lined cardboard container and place in an orange or clear autoclave bag labeled with biohazard symbol

      • Autoclave and dispose in regular trash

    • Liquid Waste

      • Autoclave or decontaminate with bleach for disposal in sanitary sewer

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Contaminated Laundry research lab?

Reusable lab coats should never be taken

home to be laundered.

Lab coats worn during the manipulation of

blood or OPIM should be bagged and

appropriately labeled with the universal

biohazard symbol prior to pick-up or drop-off

for laundry service. Attempts should be

made to limit contact with contaminated


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Exposure Control Plan (ECP) research lab?

  • A manual for how to work safely with blood and OPIM.

  • A comprehensive, workplace-specific document that outlines in detail all measures that will be taken to minimize or eliminate employee exposure.

    UK Exposure Control Plan Template:

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Exposure Control Plan (ECP) research lab?

  • The components of the ECP:

    • Exposure Determination

    • Methods of Compliance

    • Hepatitis B Vaccination

    • Communication of Hazards

    • Post Exposure Evaluation and Follow-up

      All labs utilizing human blood or OPIM must have an Exposure Control Plan.

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Exposure Determination research lab?

  • Considers the type of materials being utilized and the tasks and procedures that will be performed in the lab

  • Risk assessment for exposure to bloodborne pathogens

  • Allows personnel to familiarize themselves with the hazards present

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Methods of Compliance research lab?

Summary of methods to prevent personnel from exposure to blood or OPIM including:

  • Engineering Controls

  • Work Practice Controls

  • PPE

  • Housekeeping Procedures

  • Training Documentation

  • Exposure Incident Contact Information

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Bloodborne Pathogens Training research lab?

  • Bloodborne pathogen training must be taken on an annual basis by all employees with occupational exposure to blood or OPIM

  • This training requirement is met by reviewing this on-line training and successfully completing the accompanying quiz

  • Training certificates should be maintained in the Lab Safety Manual

  • Research labs utilizing HIV and HBV require additional training

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Hepatitis B Vaccination research lab?

  • Immunization primary measure for prevention

  • Administered as a series of 3 injections

  • Provided at no cost to UK employees who may be exposed to bloodborne pathogens in the workplace

  • Imparts immunity in over 95% of vaccinated individuals

  • Safe and effective

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Hepatitis B Vaccination research lab?

To decline vaccination, sign a declination form stating:

I understand that due to my occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials I may be at risk of acquiring hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. I have been given the opportunity to be vaccinated with hepatitis B vaccine, at no charge to myself. However, I decline hepatitis B vaccination at this time. I understand that by declining this vaccine, I continue to be at risk of acquiring hepatitis B, a serious disease. If in the future I continue to have occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials and I want to be vaccinated with hepatitis B vaccine, I can receive the vaccination series at no charge to me.

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Communication of Hazards research lab?

  • Labels containing the universal biohazard symbol should be placed anywhere blood or OPIM is used or stored.

  • This includes labeling of contaminated laundry and waste.

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Post Exposure Evaluation and Follow-up research lab?

In the event of an exposure incident:

  • Wash the area with soap and water or flush with water

  • Notify your supervisor of the incident

  • Your supervisor will contact Workers’ Care at 1-800-440-6285 and an appointment will be scheduled for you at University Health Services

    For more information on post-exposure response:

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Questions? research lab?

Department of Biological Safety

505 Oldham Court

Lexington, KY 40502


Marcia Finucane

Biosafety Officer

Phone:  859-257-1049

Cell:  859-699-1553

Holley Trucks

Senior Biosafety Specialist

Phone:  859-257-8655

Cell:  859-699-6082

Eric Rouse

Biosafety Specialist

Phone: 323-5728

Cell: 859-797-8431