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OSHA redrafts guidelines on avian flu protection
Washington - The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) updated its guidelines on occupational exposure to avian influenza from infected birds.
WASHINGTON — The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) updated its guidelines on occupational exposure to avian influenza from infected birds.
The document, titled OSHA Guidance Update on Protecting Employees from Avian Flu Viruses, recommends ways to avoid infection. It is available online at www.osha.gov.
"We encourage employers and employees who are most likely to be exposed to avian flu to take the appropriate precautions," says OSHA Administrator Ed Foulke in a news release.
"This guidance offers them practical tips, such as hand washing and the use of proper protective equipment, for preventing illness."
The new document, updated from 2004, provides separate recommendations for poultry employees and those who handle other animals, and for laboratory employees, healthcare personnel, food handlers, travelers and U.S. employees stationed abroad.
Veterinarians are included in the document's recommendations for animal handlers.
The guidelines focus mainly on good hygiene, including use of gloves and frequent hand washing as well as respiratory protection for those who work with infected animals or individuals.