Occupational Safety and Health Act
The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 was signed into law on December 29, 1970 by President Richard M. Nixon, and it created both the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). This act is intended to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses and deaths by issuing and enforcing rules (called standards) for workplace safety and health.
Since its inception, workplace fatalities have been cut by 77% and workplace injuries have declined 55% while employment has doubled from 56 million workers at 3.5 million work-sites to 115 million workers at nearly 7 million work-sites
The portions that most strongly impact pharmacy are:
- Written hazard communication program
- Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
- Air contaminants
- Flammable and combustible liquids
- General concerns about hazardous materials
The act provides stern enforcement policies with fines up to $10,000 for instances where employers “willfully” expose workers to “serious” harm or death. Any act of criminal negligence can result in imprisonment of up to six months.
- United States Department of Labor, OSH Act of 1970, http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owasrch.search_form?p_doc_type=OSHACT&p_toc_level=0&p_keyvalue=
- Wikipedia, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Occupational_Safety_and_Health_Administration