Archive for August, 2019

Respirator Fit Testing Respirator Clearance Pulmonary Function Test (Spirometry)

Saturday, August 17th, 2019
Respirator Fit Testing Respirator Clearance Pulmonary Function Test (Spirometry)

Respirator Medical Clearance Respir…

DID YOU KNOW THAT A RESPIRATOR FIT TEST IS A MANDATORY ANNUAL OSHA COMPLIANT TEST?        

KSA Occupational Services can help your organization implement a respiratory protection program and take care of your OSHA HEARING CONSERVATION PROGRAM.

KSA offers a full range of respiratory fit testing to help your organization remain compliant with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) regulations. KSA delivers comprehensive qualitative fit testing and quantitative fit testing to your employees at the job site. Reducing costs and loss of work time using offsite exams.

KSA Respiratory fit testing guarantees the functionality of your respiratory equipment.

Ensuring the mask fit test is perfect for a broad range of devices, including:

  • Dust masks
  • Self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA)
  • Half-face masks
  • Full-face masks
  • Supplied air respirators

Employees working a position that is regulated by OSHA Respirator Standard CFR 1910.134 are required to have a respirator fit testing done at least once a year. The test is always done before working with a new mask or after changes in the employee’s facial characteristics. Annual or more frequent tests ensure a continuous protection against mask wear and tear and facial changes.

Qualitative Respirator Fit Test

For job positions where a mask is required, KSA Occupational Services specializes in the affordable and effective testing procedure called Qualitative testing. In this test, the employee wears the facemask along with a hood over their head. The tester then applies a series of test agents and gauges the employee’s ability to detect the smells and tastes. Individuals who are able to detect these agents must have their mask adjusted or changed for proper fitting.

The test agents generally used include:

Saccharin – a sweet tasting solid aerosol.

  • Isoamyl acetate – a liquid that produces a sweet smelling vapor similar to bananas.
  • BitrexTM – a bitter tasting solid aerosol.
  • Irritant smoke – a solid aerosol made of stannic oxychloride that produces hydrochloric acid when it comes in contact with water vapor.

Pulmonary Function Test

Many times a respirator fit test is done along with a Pulmonary Function Test (PFT), also known as a Spirometry. Whereas the respirator fit testing ensures the mask worn is the right fit and model for the employee, the pulmonary function test actually gauges the employee’s lung health. Most often, employers use this test to develop a baseline to compare future against future tests.

Having this established baseline is a good protection when evaluating the cause of worker’s compensation claims, as well as making sure employees have the adequate protection necessary to perform their job.

As with the qualitative respirator fit testing, KSA also offers pulmonary function tests (spirometry) in office or at your business for your convenience to save you time and money.

Respiratory Hazards

Employers must provide respirator masks and fit testing to employees when any of the following hazards are present in the work environment:

  • Dust and Fibers: Solid particles formed from mechanical process. Ex: lead, asbestos
  • Fumes: Solid particles that vaporizes and condenses in cool air. Ex: welding fumes
  • Mists: Liquid droplets suspended in air from spraying operations. Ex: paint spray mist
  • Gases: Individual molecules in the air at room temperature. Ex: carbon monoxide
  • Vapors: Gaseous substances normally liquid or solid in room temperature. Ex: solvents
  • Biological Hazards: Living organisms that can cause infections. Ex: viruses, animal waste

Different Assigned Protection Factors (APF) and Maximum Use Concentrations (MUC) will determine the appropriate respirator mask to be used.

Questions? give us a call today: at KSA 615-426-9556 or drop us an email at drmike@ksahearingconservation.com

On-Site Respirator Fit Testing Pulmonary Function testing and Respiratory Clearance Medical Evaluations: The Mobile Onsite Advantage

Saturday, August 17th, 2019

When it comes to medical surveillance testing, you should have more options.

Why send your team to urgent care, where they will wait in long lines with the general public, costing you money and downtime.

 Your testing should be done on your terms and completed around your schedule.

That’s why we test 24/7/365 Onsite.

At KSA Occupational Services, we’re all about keeping your workplace productive and OSHA-compliant.

We test Nationwide.

·       Need Audio Hearing Exams, Respirator Fit Testing, Pulmonary Function testing (Spirometry) and OSHA Respirator Medical Evaluations?

How about Certified DOT  Physicals, and drug testing? , Hearing Conservation Training?

Meet all of your OSHA-required medical surveillance testing requirements at one time.

We safely maintain your company health records and offer you full accessibility. 

Questions & Answers for your Respirator Fit Tests and Respiratory Clearance Medical Evaluations:

Information to know: Every person required to wear a respirator in the workplace must be:

(1.) Medically evaluated to see if respirator use is safe for them and

(2.) Fit tested to make sure the respirator doesn’t leak. Employers are responsible for making sure these tests happen.

 Why a medical evaluation before respirator use? High blood pressure, asthma and emphysema can interfere with the safe use of respirators. So can bronchitis, epilepsy, even claustrophobia, anxiety and previous heart attack or stroke.

Medical evaluations must be provided by employers, but it doesn’t mean that employees must go see the doctor. Employers can have workers fill out the questionnaire from OSHA’s Respiratory Protection Standard, appendix C

A PLHCP Medical Provider then reviews the answers for approval or not, and further determination if further exam is needed (PFT Spirometry or other exam)

Medical evaluations video from OSHA:

Fit Testing.

Next, an employee must undergo a Respirator Fit Test with the make, model and size of respirator that he or she will wear on the job. Note: Only tight-fitting respirators need to be fit tested.

Two options: qualitative and quantitative.

First, qualitative. This checks for air leaks while the person is wearing a respirator. A hood is placed over their head.

A sweet, bitter or banana smelling gas is introduced into the hood. If the person can smell or taste the gas, there is a leak. Irritant smoke can also be used which causes coughing, though it is not performed with the hood.

Second, Quantitative. A machine is attached to the mask by a hose. It can measure if there’s a leak and how large the leak is.

Respirator fit testing video from OSHA:

Other considerations for fit tests:

— They must be performed at least once every 12 months.

— The seal can be impacted by facial hair, facial scars, major dental work, facial surgery and even significant weight loss or gain.

— The other gear a person will wear on the job can affect a good fit too. Glasses or goggles are examples.

— If a respirator doesn’t fit an employee, the employer must provide alternative respirators.

— Fit tests can be performed by the employer or by an outside party such as a Mobile testing company for on-site testing.

— Once cleared to use a respirator at work, an employee should perform a seal check before use daily. Look to the respirators manufacturer for procedures. There are two methods: negative pressure check and positive pressure check. These involve covering certain parts of the respirator and inhaling or exhaling.

Complete Your Respirator Clearance with KSA Occupational Services

As per OSHA, employers must provide the respirator medical clearance questionnaire to any employee required to wear a respirator at work to ensure that each employee is medically able to do so. At KSA Occupational services, we make completing the questionnaire an easy and affordable process. Your employees can complete the questionnaire , have it reviewed by our staff Medical Provider, and have a respirator clearance certificate issued. All information provided on the medical questionnaire will be handled in accordance to HIPAA and OSHA Regulation 29 CFR 1910.134 guidelines.

Questions? Need a quote?

Call KSA today at 615-426-9556.

Questions to be aware of regarding Respiratory FIT testing, PFT Spirometry testing, and the mandatory Medical evaluation Questionnaire

Saturday, August 17th, 2019

·       Questions to be aware of regarding Respiratory FIT testing and/or PFT Spirometry testing, and the mandatory Medical evaluation questionnaire prior to FIT testing.

1.     The respirator medical clearance process performed by KSA consists of the following components: • Review of completed OSHA respirator questionnaire by a qualified health care provider. If indicated by the responses on the OSHA respirator questionnaire, the following may be completed: • Vital signs • Medical history • Physical examination • Pulmonary function testing (spirometry) followed by the Respiratory FIT test.

2.     Type of Respirator, full face or half face or Disposable and what it is being used for? Paint? Emergency, chemical (what type) etc.

3.     Qualitative or Quantitative FIT testing? Type of FIT testing required: Qualitative fit testing is a pass/fail test method that uses your sense of taste or smell, or your reaction to an irritant in order to detect leakage into the respirator facepiece. Qualitative fit testing does not measure the actual amount of leakage. Whether the respirator passes or fails the test is based simply on you detecting leakage of the test substance into your facepiece usually utilizing a hood over the head with respirator on. Quantitative fit testing uses a machine to measure the actual amount of leakage into the face-piece and does not rely upon your sense of taste, smell, or irritation in order to detect leakage. The respirators used during this type of fit testing will have a probe attached to the face-piece that will be connected to the machine by a hose.

4.     PFT’s Spirometry required? AS part of the fit testing? Or as Medical Surveillance? And if for Medical Surveillance what for? or as part of medical exam with questionnaire for FIT testing?

5.     OSHA respirator medical questionnaire

Before donning a respirator, employees must be medically cleared to wear a respirator by a physician or other licensed healthcare professional. As part of the medical clearance process, a medical questionnaire is required to be answered by the employee. The questionnaire is confidential and has questions related to the employee’s health history and focuses on the task in which the employee is required to wear the respirator. The physician or other licensed healthcare professional will make the determination if the employee is physically fit to wear a respirator.

To save you time, money, and the hassle of coordinating clinic appointments OR Onsite testing on your schedule, KSA evaluates and reviews the medical evaluation of respirator wearers as required by the OSHA Respiratory Protection Standard (29 CFR 1910.134**), prior to the FIT testing procedure.

You must be fit tested before you use a respirator in the workplace, and you must be retested at least every 12 months to make sure that the respirator you use still fits you. You must be fit tested with the specific make, model, style, and size of respirator that you will be using.

You have questions? We have answers. We test onsite 24/7/365 on your schedule

Call KSA Occupational Services. 615-426-9556

Dr. Michael Tigges

RESPIRATORY PROTECTION PROGRAM & TESTING SERVICES

Saturday, August 17th, 2019

RESPIRATORY PROTECTION PROGRAM & TESTING SERVICES

Each employee enrolled in a company’s Respiratory Protection Program must have a current Medical Clearance for Respiratory Use, must receive an annual respirator fit test and must receive annual respiratory training. KSA Occupational Services helps our clients maintain compliance with these key components of the OSHA Respiratory Standard 29 CFR 1910.134.

Respiratory Clearance

·        OSHA Health History Questionnaire

·        Spirometry (lung capacity test)

·        Physician review

Respirator Fit testing

·        Qualitative fit testing for half-masks

·        Quantitative fit testing for full-faced masks

Documentation

·        Fit testing documentation with employee signatures

·        Medical clearance forms with physician recommendation

Respiratory Training

·        OSHA-approved video training

·        Question and answer session available upon request

·        Sign-in sheets provided to client as documentation of training

HEARING CONSERVATION TESTING PROGRAM “Mobile Test Van Exception”

Saturday, August 17th, 2019

HEARING CONSERVATION TESTING PROGRAM “Mobile Test Van Exception”

KSA Occupational Services audiometric testing program is administered in accordance with OSHA Regulatory Standard 29 CFR 1910.95. The OSHA Occupational Noise Exposure Standard contains a “Mobile Test Van Exception” with regard to obtaining an employee’s baseline audiogram.

For those not implementing mobile van services, OSHA provides the following guidelines: 1910.95(g)(5)(i) ³Within 6 months of an employee’s first exposure at or above the action level, the employer shall establish a valid baseline audiogram against which subsequent audiograms can be compared.´

For those taking advantage of mobile van services, OSHA states: 1910.95(g)(5)(ii) ³Mobile test van exception. Where mobile test vans are used to meet the audiometric testing obligation, the employer shall obtain a valid baseline audiogram within 1 year of an employee’s first exposure at or above the action level. Where baseline audiograms are obtained more than 6 months after the employee’s first exposure at or above the action level, employees shall wear hearing protectors for any period exceeding six months after first exposure until the baseline audiogram

We specialize in OSHA Audiometric Hearing testing and Hearing Conservation programs:

Audiometric Testing

·        Testing booths have a triple-layer of sound proofing

·        Up to 6 employees tested at a time

·        State-of-the-art Benson micro-processor audiometers are used for consistency and accuracy

·        Immediate comparison to baseline

·        Audiometers automatically retest any frequency where a hearing shift has occurred

·        If completed test shows an STS, most employees can receive their re-test on the same day or next day.

Otoscope exam conducted when problematic tests occur

·        Continuous monitoring of test room noise levels

·        Testing instructions available in 8 languages

Documentation via Web-based Reporting

·        Secure, password protected

·        Retest reports

·        Standard Threshold Shift (STS) reports

·        Notification letters

·        OSHA Recordable reports

·        Group reports

·        Equipment calibration reports

Audiometric Training

·        OSHA-approved video training

·        Pamphlets available upon request

·        Question and answer session available upon request

·        Sign-in sheets provided to client as documentation of training