Hazards in Hospitals Explained

The hazards defined as the material or agents that affect normal functioning, possible source danger or risk called the hazards. The hazards in the hospitals listed below for

Electrical Hazards in Hospitals

It consists of macro-shock, micro-shock, and burn. Macro-shock to any OT personnel may occur due to faulty electrical connections. Micro-shock or skin burn to the patient may occur due to inadequate diathermy machine grounding or defect in insulation. This can even cause ventricular fibrillation when the electric current instead of the grounding pad travels through electrocardiography leads or pacemaker catheter.

PRECAUTION

  • Check all extension cords and electric connections at intervals as long as the OT work continues.
  • Use of bipolar electric cautery should be undertaken wherever possible.
  • Document of the pacemaker, appropriate resuscitative equipment, and magnet should be at hand.
  • In case of robotic surgery, cautery tip should be well coated.

RADIATION HAZARDS

The potential radiological hazards can categorize into thermal, as in lasers, radioactive isotopes, as in brachytherapy and radioimmunoscintigraphy procedures, and electromagnetic radiation as in X-ray, gamma, and ultraviolet (UV) radiation.

IONIZING RADIATION

“National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurement” established a maximum limit of X-ray for occupational exposure to 5 years except for any personal medical requirement.

PRECAUTION

Lead aprons with a material of 0.25 mm reduce radiation by 90% and 0.5 mm by 99% as per as the occupational exposure is concerned. But the best way is a physical separation because the intensity of scattered radiation is inversely proportional to the square of the distance from the source. A recommended distance is  3 feet from the source.

NONIONIZING RADIATION

Produced by a laser. The fume sources from infrared/UV or visible. Its harmful because of its intensity and the substance released during the treatment. Chances of eye injury by direct or reflected radiation are there to the person operating it.

PRECAUTION

  • Keep suction close to the fume generated.
  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recommends a suction system that, positioned within 2 inches of the surgical site having a capture velocity of 100–150 ft/min at the inlet nozzle and can pull 50 cubic ft/minute.
  • Use protective eyeshield with permitting vision. UV ray is another source of radiation in modern orthopedic OT
  • Used to decrease the bacteria in the environment during joint replacement surgery. Precaution Protective shield used both for the patient and the team.

ACCIDENTAL HAZARDS

Related to Patient:

The possibilities are faulty operative procedures, fall from OT table, injury due to improper positioning, and the wrong patient having identical names.

Related to Team:

Slip and fall on the wet floor, cuts from blades, needle prick, and pain due to a long hour of standing or handling of patients.

PRECAUTION

  • Proper identification of the patient and the surgical procedure is a must.
  • Check for patient’s comfort in the intended position of surgery before induction of anesthesia whenever practical.
  • A caution sign for the wet floor, slip-resistant shoes to prevent against fall.
  • Disposal of wastes in earmarked containers.
  • Use of personal protective equipment to avoid Hazards in Hospitals
  • Do not squeeze blood from the needle pricked part, wash in running water with an antiseptic solution, use first aid, and report to the hospital’s infection control committee.
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