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Safety, Health, Environment, and Risk Management

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The Hospital and Clinical Safety Program under the Environmental Health and Safety Department oversees and coordinates efforts to maintain a safe work environment at the UTHealth Clinics, the Harris County Psychiatric Center (HCPC) and the UTPhysicians Clinics.  The program ensures compliance with institutional, local, state, and federal environmental, health, and safety regulations, including CMS, CLIA, and Joint Commission hospital accreditation requirements in the area of Environment of Care, Life Safety, and Emergency Management.


UTPhysicians

Policies

UT Health Environmental Health and Safety has tailored policies specific to the needs of UTPhysicians based on UTP administrative policies, UTHealth HOOP polices, UTHealth EHS guidance documents, local, state or federal requirements and best practices for quality and safety.

The most current version of UTP EHS policies can be found on UTP Clinical Resources:

Associated forms can also be found on UTP Clinical Resources


Reporting a Worker Injury

UTHealth maintains Workers’ Compensation Insurance (“WCI”) through UT System as part of a self-administered/self-insurance plan.  This plan provides necessary and reasonable medical coverage and income benefits payments to employees who sustain injuries or occupational disease while in the course and scope of employment.  Some of the employee benefits are:  Disability income, medical expense reimbursement, and rehabilitation services.

UTHealth as the employer has a duty of care to you the employee to:  provide a safe place to work, provide competent fellow employees, provide safe tools and equipment, warn employees of inherent dangers and make and enforce rules for the safety of all employees.

For more information: link


Disposal of Expired Medication

Medications (Pharmaceuticals) can be classified as non-hazardous and hazardous.

Hazardous pharmaceuticals must be disposed in a specific manner and should be reviewed by UTH EHS (Environmental Protection) for disposal instructions. The following list are the most common hazardous medications EHS has encountered at clinics. If you are trying to discard any of these materials, please contact EPP at 713-500-5837.  From our website, hazardous waste disposal procedures.

Antineoplastics
Thimersol or phenylmercuric acetate (vaccines, eye drops, nasal spray, Influenza vaccine or Meningococcal Polysacharide with thimerosal preservative)
Nicotine
Racepinephrine & Primatene aerosol inhaler
Aluminum chloride hexahydrate
Unused silver nitrate applicators
Benzoin Tincture
Ethyl chloride (topical spray)

Non-hazardous pharmaceuticals can be disposed of in the white non-hazardous pharmaceuticals boxes supplied and picked up by Stericycle.


Compressed Gas at HCPC

Gas Cylinders are under pressure and have the potential to travel like an out-of-control rocket.

  • You must ensure all compressed gas cylinders are properly secured in an upright position
  • The cylinders must be transported with the proper hand carts
  • Do not attempt to repair valves or their relief valves or their relief devices
  • Remove from service, Tag and Report leaking cylinders or cylinders with stuck valve.  These cylinders must be transferred to a safe and secure location.


Helpful Links

Safety, Health, Environment, and Risk Management
HCPC Main Site
HCPC Policies and Emergency Operations Plan (EOP)
HCPC Safety Policies
HCPC Web Forms and FSRs
Joint Commission Resources
Joint Commission
Safety Data Sheet
EMResources
EMTrack
WebEOC


Point of Care Testing (POCT)

Point-of-care testing (POCT) is defined as medical testing at or near the site of patient care. The goal of POCT is to collect the specimen and obtain accurate results in a very short period of time at or near the location of the patient.POCT is often accomplished through the use of transportable, portable, and handheld instruments.

The main aim, and benefit, of POCT is to bring the test conveniently and immediately to the patient. This increases the likelihood that the physician and care team will receive the results quicker, enabling clinicians to support the timely diagnosis, monitoring and treatment of patients. (Read more...)


Malfunctioning Medical Equipment at HCPC

  1. REMOVE the equipment to prevent its use
  2. TAG IT
  3. REPORT IT- Create an FSR (Medial Equipment Request)

HCPC request dialog box

Create an FSR (Safety Request) for collection of the "Black Container" inside the medication room when the container is 100% full

RCRA Container


Training

Initial Clinical Safety Training – Required ONCE as part of New Employee Orientation. Required for all employees.

Annual Refresher Clinical Safety Training – Required ANNUALLY, beginning 1 year after completion of Initial Clinical Safety Training. Required for all  employees.

Medical Waste Shipping Training – Any employees that prepare medical waste materials for transportation or sign the waste transport manifest papers (Stericycle receipt) – Training is good for 3 years.

All trainings can be found and completed on Learn2Succeed (L2S).

For information on how to add an online course to your learning plan in L2S, please click here.

Questions regarding training?
Contact Stephen David at 713-500-5858
or contact our main office at 713-500-8100


Hospital and Clinical Safety Staff

Cynthia- web

Cynthia Quinones, Safety Manager

Cynthia.M.Quinones@uth.tmc.edu
(713) 741-3894
HCPC

B.S.: Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico (Psychology)
M.S.: University of Central Florida (Criminal Justice)
M.I.E.: University of Houston (Master of Industrial Engineering)

Kristin King

Kristin King, Clinical Safety Coordinator

Kristin.G.King@uth.tmc.edu
(713) 500-8163
OCB

B.S.: The University of Texas at Austin (Microbiology)
MPH: University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (Environmental and Occupational Health Science)