A new alliance formed Thursday between OSHA and the Association of Occupational Health Professionals (AOHP) is aimed at improving worker safety and health in the healthcare industry.

"We look forward to tapping the collective expertise of more than 1,100 healthcare professionals who want to work with us to assure that workers throughout the healthcare industry enjoy safe and healthful work environments,” said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. “AOHP members are strong advocates for occupational safety and health, and we welcome this valuable relationship."

"With our combined efforts,” added AOHP President Emeritus MaryAnn Gruden, RN, CRNP, “we look forward to making a significant difference in the safety of healthcare workers."

The alliance will focus on providing AOHP members and others with information, guidance and access to training resources that can help reduce and prevent exposure to hazards associated with patient handling, bloodborne diseases and bioterrorism. It will also address implementation issues in healthcare facilities. Workplace safety and health curricula will be developed for training and education programs on patient handling and bloodborne pathogens for healthcare institutions and workers.

OSHA and AOHP will seek opportunities to jointly develop and distribute information at conferences and events and through their individual Web sites. Both organizations will provide speakers and exhibits for conferences and other events to promote safety and health throughout the healthcare industry.

Other elements of the alliance include:

  • OSHA personnel and industry safety and health pros will cross-train in AOHP's best practices or effective approaches.
  • AOHP and OSHA will develop and disseminate case studies illustrating the business value of safety and health.
  • Joint participation will take place in forums and roundtable discussions on healthcare workplace safety and health issues.