Pharmacy

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Biological Agents

Risk of:

  • Infection.

Possible causes:

  • Testing procedures that involve piercing skin.
  • Contact with infectious patient e.g. TB patient.

Chemical Agents

Risk of:

  • Health effects such as poisoning, allergies, dermatitis, cancer or effects on the unborn child.

Possible causes:

  • Exposure to cryogenic chemicals, cytotoxins, antibiotics especially during formulation procedures (blending / compounding), drug reconstitution and mixing but also during handling, disposal and administration.
  • Use of disinfectants and detergents.
  • Inappropriate or lack of use of engineering controls and PPE.
  • Improper practices during drug preparation.
  • Contact with latex consumables e.g. use of powdered latex gloves.

Electricity

Risk of:

  • Electric shock.
  • Burns.
  • Death.
  • Fire.

Possible causes:

  • Faulty equipment.
  • No or poor maintenance of equipment.
  • Improper use of equipment.
  • Overloading of sockets.

 

Ergonomic Hazards

Risk of:

  • Pain in neck, back or arms.
  • Musculoskeletal disorders such as carpel tunnel syndrome.

Possible causes:

  • Repetitive movements during dispensing, opening and closing bottle lids or crushing or cutting tablets.
  • Over reaching.
  • Awkward postures.
  • Poor product or stock placement.
  • Poor table or bench height.
  • Poor workstation or equipment set up e.g. computer.

 

Equipment

Risk of:

  • Burns.
  • Electrocution.

Possible causes:

  • Use of heat sealers.
  • Lack of equipment maintenance.

Ionising Radiation

Risk of:

  • Genetic effects.
  • Reproductive effects.
  • Cancer.

Possible causes:

  • Exposure to diagnostic and therapeutic radiopharmaceuticals.

 

Lone Working

Risk of:

  • Increased vulnerability in event of an incident such as a robbery.

Possible causes:

  • Unsafe system of work.

 

Sharps

Risk of:

  • Cuts.
  • Infection.

Possible causes:

  • Use of scalpels, scissors, knives or lancets.
  • Handling of packaging.
  • Broken glassware.

 

Slips, Trips and Falls

Risk of:

  • Physical injury ranging from minor cuts to more serious injuries such as broken bones.

Possible causes:

  • Poor housekeeping.
  • Trailing cables due for example to insufficient electrical sockets resulting in use of extension leads

 

Violence and Aggression

Risk of:

  • Physical and / or psychological effects.

Possible causes:

  • Dealing with aggressive members of the public.
  • Robbery.

 

Further Information

For further information on related controls click here.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list of hazards and risks.