Occupational Health

 

The Bloodborne Pathogens Program and Adult Hepatitis B Vaccination Program are contracted services that provide training in accordance with the PEOSH standard to all public employees whose jobs place them at risk. Complying with the law and informing and educating people about health issues protects health and ensures the safety of both the public and personal healthcare workforce. These two programs provide the development and delivery of exposure control plans as required by state statute, as well as counseling in exposures, record keeping, vaccinations for employees requesting them, and follow-up for compliance.


To comply with the May 2001 revised bloodborne pathogen standard, Hepatitis B Surface Antibody Titer Testing is being offered through an agreement with two Bergen County hospital laboratories. The department completes records and provides follow up to afford compliance. The revised standard also requires the use of safety syringes. All information on necessary items, choices, paperwork and a needlestick log were provided to contracting municipalities, schools and county divisions.


In 2001, BCDHS contracted to provide these services to 48 municipalities, 33 public school districts, eight Bergen County departments, the Bergen County Special Services School District including Bergen County Technical-Vocational Schools, and Bergen County Community Action Program. A total of 4,125 school employees and 5,437 municipal and county employees attended the annual retraining.


A total of 629 hepatitis B vaccinations were administered. Of those vaccinated, 30 percent were municipal employees, 14 percent county employees, and 56 percent school district employees. The program continues to provide regional hepatitis B vaccination programs in selected regional areas to increase accessibility and population-based health services. Through strategic follow-up, the rate of compliance has increased for completion of the hepatitis B vaccination series of three shots.


The New Jersey Worker and Community RTK Program (Right-To-Know) fulfills legislation requiring employers to provide information about hazardous substances at their workplaces. As the designated lead county agency, the department is actively involved in providing a comprehensive RTK Program and acts as the RTK repository for regulated facilities within the county. The department also coordinates an RTK program for more than 2,000 county employees. All county employees receive literature with information pertaining to the Right-To-Know laws as per New Jersey Department of Health mandates.