The US Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) has fined Sacred Heart Medical Center for the violation of safety standards in H1N1 prevention.
L&I found the hospital to be in violation in eight specific instances and issued a fine for each violation, totalling $8,000 in fines.
The findings were in response to a complaint filed by the Washington State Nurses Association against Sacred Heart.
The violation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines on H1N1 is the first to be under consideration in court.
The violation of the DOSH Directive on Enforcement Procedures for High or Very High Occupational Exposure Risk to the 2009 H1N1 Influenza is also to be highlighted.
An inadequate written respiratory protection programme, a lack of testing or training on an annual basis of employees who wear N-95 respirators and no provision for men with facial hair are the other violations L&I cited.
The hospital will be cited by law on its health and safety bulletin board for three working days or until all violations are corrected, whichever time period is longer.