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Preventing Latex Allergy. National Latex Allergy Awareness Week October 1-6, 2006 Workplace Hazards Conference – Marlboro MA June 7, 2007. Presenter information. Linda Coulombe RN, BS, CNOR, CRCST Lancaster General Hospital Lancaster PA 717-544-7345 lcoulombe1925@comcast.net.

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Preventing Latex Allergy


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    1. Preventing Latex Allergy National Latex Allergy Awareness Week October 1-6, 2006 Workplace Hazards Conference – Marlboro MA June 7, 2007

    2. Presenter information • Linda Coulombe RN, BS, CNOR, CRCST • Lancaster General Hospital • Lancaster PA • 717-544-7345 • lcoulombe1925@comcast.net

    3. Preventing Latex Allergy • Identify at least two reasons to go latex safe • Identify at least two obstacles to conquer • Identify at least two benefits to patient and staff

    4. Preventing Latex Allergy • Why Try • I have to ask Why Not? • Loss of job • Loss of income • Loss of social life • Loss of security • Loss of life

    5. Preventing Latex Allergy Background • Pennsylvania first state to declare Latex Allergy Awareness Week • Week of October 4-10, 1998 • 1997 FDA received 1700 reports of latex reactions • 16 deaths • NIOSH alert 1997 • September 1998 FDA mandated latex label on items

    6. Preventing Latex Allergy • 1998 FDA reported 29 Deaths due to Latex Allergy • Latex Glove Reactions • 1999 FDA reported 2,330 latex reactions [associated with latex glove reactions only] • 5 deaths • 1999 Food Code Annex • Food preparation passed to sensitive persons

    7. Preventing Latex Allergy • Research Studies Show Latex Allergy 2001 • 20% Health Care workers • 17% Nurses • 6.7% Surgeons • 38% Dental Care workers • 34% Children undergone 3 or more surgeries • 11% Rubber industry workers • 6.8% individuals with other allergies • 18 million Americans [6% of general pop]

    8. Preventing Latex Allergy • Administrative Support • CEO/COO • CFO • Physicians • Infection Control • Risk Management • Human Resources • Department Heads

    9. Preventing Latex Allergy • Found in more than 40,000 commonly used products in • Health Care • Home • Community

    10. Preventing Latex Allergy Major Contributors Health Care • Gloves • Powder • Too big/small • Don’t stretch • Don’t grasp • Catheters • Not flexible • Patient complains • Use the silicon coated • Airways • Won’t hold up to abuse

    11. Preventing Latex Allergy Major Contributors Health Care • Elastic Wrap • Won’t stretch • Won’t hold • IV Injection Port • Only the port • Tourniquets • Won’t stretch • Balloons • Who cares – just a balloon

    12. Preventing Latex Allergy Major Contributors Home • Balloons • Child’s parties • powder • Gloves • Cleaning • Gardening • Pacifiers • Starting young • Band-Aids • Everyone loves a band aid

    13. Preventing Latex Allergy Major Contributors Home • Condoms • Avanti • Safe sex • Rubber Bands • Won’t stretch • Break easier • Clothing with elastic • Cloth covering • All cotton • Sneakers

    14. Preventing Latex Allergy Major Contributors Foods High • Banana • Avocado • Chestnut Moderate • Kiwi • Potato • Tomato • Papaya

    15. Preventing Latex Allergy • Major Contributors Community • Balloons • Food Handlers • Carpeting • Toys • Balls • Bikes – handle covers • Just about everything

    16. Preventing Latex Allergy • Hospital Trials • Education • First • Complete • Accurate • Change • No one likes change • Focus on the good differences • Conversions • New products – look and feel different • Benefits • Prevent latex sensitivity

    17. Preventing Latex Allergy It’s Our Responsibility To • Screen Patients • Use Screening Tool Questionnaire • Provide a safe environment for all • Harm to patient; • wasted OR time; additional expense for supplies • Extended hospital stay

    18. Preventing Latex Allergy It’s the Facility’s Responsibility To • Screen Employees • Provide a safe environment for all • Provide latex alternative products • Provide counseling and testing • Make the workplace home • Policy & procedure for employees

    19. Preventing Latex Allergy • What Can I Do? • Ask for support – can’t do it alone • Make sure you have the facts • Know your rights • JCAHO recommendations • OSHA Recommendations • Position Statements

    20. Preventing Latex Allergy Key Steps for Reducing Latex Allergy • Get Latex out of the air • Latex free gloves • Powder free gloves • Ban latex balloons • Establish policy for hospital • Keep latex away from mucosa • More quickly absorbed

    21. Preventing Latex Allergy Position Statements • 2004 Patient Safety Authority PA position statement • American College of Surgeons position statement on Latex Allergy • American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology position statement • AORN position statement and Latex Guideline

    22. Preventing Latex Allergy • Q & A • And in the end it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years. Abraham Lincoln • Thank you for helping to keep all customers safe