Date of Award
Hazardous drugs (HDs) have many therapeutic applications in healthcare, but with their benefits come drawbacks. Much has been documented over the past several decades about the adverse effects of HDs, particularly for those with indirect, occupational exposure. This exposure comes primarily from inadvertent dermal contact with drug material and residue, and is observed in individuals who handle HDs directly, including pharmacists and pharmacy technicians who compound and prepare the drugs. However, individuals have the potential for exposure when interacting with HDs at all stages of the drug’s “life cycle,” including preparation, administration, transport, and waste management. Among various regulatory measures put in place to ensure protection against occupational HD exposure is the relatively recent implementation of USP’s chapter <800> Hazardous Drugs - Handling in Healthcare Settings. Other industries beyond healthcare have their own pertinent hazards and mitigation strategies to prevent the adverse effects of occupational exposure. Exposure hazards like radiation, and other hazardous chemicals such as pesticides, have necessitated the construction of their own unique ecosystems for occupational exposure prevention. Healthcare and pharmacy may benefit from considering the parallels between these fields in order to assess and improve the effectiveness of existing protective measures.
Kirkpatrick, Joseph Darby, "Applying various industry best practices to prevent occupational exposure to hazardous drugs in healthcare" (2023). Undergraduate Honors Thesis Collection. 695.