Bloodborne Pathogens

Prevention of Exposure to Human Blood And Other Potentially Infectious Human Materials

The bloodborne pathogens regulations are applicable to employees in several areas of the University, specifically those who have an occupational exposure to human blood or other potentially infectious materials, including:

  • Human blood
  • Human blood components
  • Products made from human blood
  • Semen
  • Vaginal secretions
  • Cerebrospinal fluid
  • Synovial fluid
  • Pleural fluid
  • Pericardial fluid
  • Peritoneal fluid
  • Saliva in dental procedures
  • Any body fluid visibly contaminated with blood
  • Any unfixed tissue or organ (other than intact skin) from a human living or dead
  • HIV- or HBV-containing cell or tissue cultures, organ cultures, and culture medium or other solutions
  • Blood, organs, or other tissues from experimental animals infected with HIV or HBV
Occupational exposures are those exposures which are reasonably anticipated as a result of skin, eye, mucous membrane, or parenteral (under the skin) contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials during the performance of duties. This excludes incidental exposures that may take place which are neither reasonably nor routinely expected or that the worker is not required to incur on the job.

The University administration has assigned the task of implementing the bloodborne pathogens regulations to department heads and center directors. Supervisors are responsible to the department head for implementing this standard. The Environmental Health and Safety office coordinates the bloodborne pathogens program. The University's program requires that students receive the same protection and training as employees while they are pursuing academically-related endeavors. However, students may be required to provide Hepatitis B virus vaccination at their own expense and show documentation of vaccination prior to commencing selected academic activities.

Exposure Control Plan

The bloodborne pathogens regulations require that a written exposure control plan be prepared if employees have reasonably anticipated duties that may result in occupational exposure. Each department head or center director is to prepare an exposure control plan if one or more employees or students under his or her authority has the potential for an occupational exposure. A form is available from the Environmental Health and Safety office.

The exposure control plan shall be maintained in the department's Safety Information Book for accessibility to employees and students, and copied to the Environmental Health and Safety office. The plan consists of three parts:

  1. Exposure Determination - identification and documentation of all job classifications with occupational exposure, without regard to the use of personal protective equipment;
  2. The schedule and method of implementation of each applicable part of the bloodborne pathogens regulations.
  3. The procedure for evaluation of circumstances surrounding an exposure incident.
Universal Precautions

Universal precautions are observed to prevent contact with blood and other potentially infectious materials.

Universal precautions is a method of infection control in which all human blood and other related human or human-derived materials are treated as if known to be infectious for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis B virus (HBV) and other bloodborne pathogens.

Page Updated 08.06.2012