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Chemical Safety


A chemical hygiene plan protects employees from harmful effects of chemicals used to process and preserve patient specimens for testing.  The effects for a given specimen kit vary depending on the chemicals contained.  The three types of hazards to humans in the collection kits are summarized in the table below.


Chemical hazards in specimen collection kits
This image discusses the different chemical hazards in specimen collection kits. For a more detailed description, refer to the specific safety data sheet (SDS).

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General recommended precautions when working with chemicals:

  • Wear gloves, liquid impermeable long-sleeved lab coat and safety glasses or full face shield.
  • Avoid eating (including chewing gum) and drinking and touching of face during collection procedures.
  • Verify that containers are properly and tightly capped upon completing the collection


Recommended steps for a chemical hygiene plan:

  • Print safety data sheets (SDS) for every collection kit used and keep them available for employee reference.
  • Upon initial use and annually thereafter, conduct documented training for all employees who will be using the kit.  Highlight the following SDS sections:
    • Section 2 – Hazard Identification
    • Section 4 – First Aid Measures
    • Section 7 – Handling and Storage
    • Section 8 – Exposure controls/Personal Protection
    • Section 13 – Disposal



The information provided on these pages is correct to the best of our knowledge at the date of publication. The information given is designed only as a guide for safe handling, use, processing, storage, transportation, disposal and release, and is not to be considered as a warranty or quality specification. The information relates only to the specific material designated and may not be valid for such material used in combination with any other material or in any process, unless specified in the text. Safety Data Sheets (“SDS”) provide essential information for anyone handling the product. All personnel handling product should be fully aware of the potential risks involved and take appropriate safety and regulatory measures before actually working with the product. These safety measures include the technical handling of chemicals, the personal safety of people working with them as well as environmental considerations where applicable.