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Chemical exposure

Health First Occupational Medicine

As an employer, you are responsible for assuring your employees are not overexposed to hazardous substances. Exposure usually occurs by inhalation, contact, or ingestion.

  • Monitoring air quality can help prevent employees from inhaling hazardous concentrations of airborne chemicals. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has Permissible Exposure Limits (PEL) for chemicals. For hazardous chemicals not covered by an OSHA standard, departments should comply with other available recommended exposure limits, for example, the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Values (TLV), or the chemical manufacturer's recommended limits.

    Most of OSHA's chemical exposure limits are found in the 1910.1000 Air Contaminant Standard. OSHA has also developed several substance-specific standards that regulate exposure to a single chemical.

  • Isolating the worker from the hazardous chemical or using personal protective equipment (PPE) can prevent hazardous chemicals from coming in contact with employees' skin. Our occupational medicine physicians review workplaces to determine which PPEs are most appropriate, and most effective, based on specific job descriptions. We also have access to the most recent OSHA standards to ensure you meet the latest regulations.

  • Wearing appropriate gloves when handling chemicals and practicing good personal hygiene can prevent employees from ingesting hazardous chemicals. Eating, drinking, and applying cosmetics must not be allowed in areas where hazardous chemicals are used.

Health First Occupational Medicine can help you protect your most valuable assets — your employees. For more information, call us at (321) 434-8878.