Environmental Health & Safety

Occupational Health Services

Section 1

Occupational Health Services

OBTAINING OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH SERVICES AT UC IRVINE

Occupational Health Services are provided to protect you from potential illnesses that may be related to your job at UCI. Eligibility for Occupational  Health Services is determined by your job requirements and  your health status as reviewed by the UC Irvine Campus Occupational Health Coordinator. To request an evaluation at no charge,  please contact the Occupational Health Coordinator at occhlth@uci.edu or  call 949-824-6200. Your department may be responsible for subsequent fees related to medical services (e,g, vaccines, x-rays, and etc.)

 

MEDICAL SURVEILLANCE PROGRAMS

Hepatitis A Virus (HAV) vaccination is recommended for employees whose work activities potentially place them in contact with sewage or feces such as child care workers, plumbers, and those working with non-human primates. A 2-dose series of injections is recommended for pre-exposure prophylaxis to develop adequate antibodies to the HAV infection.

To obtain a Hepatitis A vaccine series,  please contact Occupational Health Coordinator at occhlth@uci.edu or call 949-824-6200.

Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) vaccination is highly recommended for employees whose work activities potentially expose them to infectious materials such as human or non-human  primate blood, blood products, body fluids, cells, (established) cell lines, or tissues. This includes lab staff, health care workers, facilities, and custodial workers. Employees have the right to refuse the HBV vaccine. Employees who refuse must complete the Hepatitis B Vaccine Letter of Declination for their employee file.

A 3-dose series of injections (0, 1-2, 4-6 mos.) is recommended for pre-exposure prophylaxis to develop adequate antibodies to the HBV infection. Documentation of serologic testing (a Hep B Titer) to monitor antibody concentrations after completion of the 3-dose series is necessary for all health care workers.

Bloodborne pathogens training is required prior to receiving HBV vaccine and is available through the UC Learning Center at www.uclc.uci.edu.

To obtain a Hepatitis B vaccine series or titer,  please contact Occupational Health Corrdinator at occhlth@uci.edu or call 949-824-6200.                  

Tetanus vaccination

Tetanus (lockjaw, painful spasms of all muscles) is a serious disease caused by the bacteria clostridium letani that enters the body through a cut, open wound, or puncture. Employees working in facilities management, health care or animal research environments should be knowledgeable  of the date of their tetanus immunization- usually received in 3 doses during childhood. If one is unsure of the date, a booster dose is recommended as well as every 10 years thereafter to maintain protective antibodies against tetanus. Tetanus toxoid injection is often combined with Diptheria vaccine (Td).

To obtain a tenanus,  please contact Occupational Health Coordinator at occhlth@uci.edu or call 949-824-6200.

Always seek prompt medical attention for any wounds as a booster may be recommended sooner than 10 years.  All work-related injuries should be reported to your supervisor and an Employee Online Incident Report completed.

LABORATORY ANIMAL OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH PROGRAM (LAOHP)

The purpose of the Laboratory Animal Occupational Health Program (LAOHP)  is to prevent illness related to animal care, to make recommendations for all lab animal handlers health and safety in the event an illness or injury related to your work with lab animals is experienced, and  to meet AAALAC lab animal care accreditation requirements.

UCI policy requires that all faculty, staff, visiting researchers and students who work directly with vertebrate animals or lab animal tissues (unfixed animal tissues or body fluids) and those who work in animal housing areas to enroll in the LAOHP through online submission of a completed LAOHP questionnaire to the Occupational Health Corrdinator.

All personnel must complete a new form:

  • Before their first contact with laboratory animals (i.e., before they are added to an IACUC protocol);
  • Annually thereafter; and
  • Whenever they experience a change in their health  status (e.g., worsening allergies, pregnancy, immune disorder diagnosed, etc.); and/or
  • Their exposure information changes (e.g., a new animal model is introduced in the lab)

Information  sheet for the care and use of:

RESPIRATORY PROTECTION PROGRAM

The Respiratory Protection Program is designed to provide for  medical assessment and equipment fit testing as mandated for all employees and students who require the use of a respirator in the scope of their work at UCI. The purpose of the Respiratory Protection Program is to prevent potential health hazards, provide for early treatment of adverse health effects, and to meet regulatory  standards as set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) from exposure to respiratory irritants in the occupational  setting. For more information, see Which Mask or Respirator Should I Use?

The employee or student must complete the OSHA Respirator Medical Evaluation Questionnaire upon entry into the Respiratory Protection Program. To obtain an emailed copy of the OSHA Respirator Medical Evaluation Questionnaire, please contact the Occupational Health Coordinator at occhlth@uci.edu or call 949-824-6200.

Physical assessment by an Occupational Health Care Provider is required for all employees using any type of air purified respirators (APR), any type of self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), and for some employees using non-cartridge respirators (N, R, or P).

TUBERCULOSIS (TB) SCREENING

Some persons are more likely to be exposed to or infected with Tuberculosis (TB) than the overall population. This includes peoplefrom countries where TB is common, residents of correctionalfacilities, people who are homeless, residents of long-term care facilities, and health care workers. For more information refer to Tuberculosis Questions and Answers.

Yearly Tuberculosis (TB) screen with purified protein derivative (PPD) administered under the skin is required for employees who have face-to-face contact with patients in clinical and non-clinical settings, including human subjects enrolled in a research protocol, childcare workers, and Laboratory staff working with tuberculosis are also tested annually. Employees previously immunized with the BCG vaccine must obtain a baseline PPD skin test.

Once the skin test is performed, employees must return to have TB tests read by designated trained personnel between 48 and 72 hours. Tests not read within this period must be repeated.

2-Step Testing

New employees with a current negative skin test who cannot show documentation of a negative PPD skin testing within the prior 12 months may be asked to return in 1 to 3 weeks for a second skin. This 2-Step method of testing will help to prevent future misinterpretation of a subsequent skin test as a newly acquired TB infection.  This “boost phenomenon” can result because the ability of some people (those who have had a previous TB infection or BCG vaccine) to react to PPD may gradually wane.

Negative results                      

If a skin test is read as negative there is no disease present.

Positive results                      

A positive skin test and no symptoms of TB can be interpreted to mean a person has been exposed to TB germs sometime during his life (latent TB infection). It does not indicate that a person has active TB or is contagious. If a skin test is read as positive, a chest x-ray must be scheduled to evaluate whether or not TB infection is active.   For more information refer to Tuberculosis Questions and Answers .

If the chest x-ray is read as negative (clear), subsequent  chest x-rays are not routinely needed unless symptoms develop that could be attributed to TB. Annual documentation of a review of TB symptoms by your health care provider or designated trained personnel to screen for active TB symptoms is required.

If a person cannot present documentation of a previous positive skin test, they should receive a PPD skin test.

Personnel with patient contact should be screened by the Occupational Health Clinic at UCIMC 714-456-8300. UCI Campus employees can contact the Occupational Health Coordinator at 949-824-6200 directly.

If you have further questions about Occupational Health Services please contact  the UC Irvine Occupational Health Coordinator at occhlth@uci.edu or call 949-824-6200.