Capabilities

We provide testing services to certify product and materials compliance, support quality control, and ensure the health and safety of workers and their environment. We provide assistance for clients who are not sure what tests they need. Our accredited materials characterization laboratory is the foundation of all the services of RJ Lee Group provides, including standardized testing for compliance, industrial hygiene and environmental analyses, quality control, and materials research and development.

We provide credentialed expertise supported built by robust scientific data. We provide significant support to industrial clients for product development, industrial hygiene and overall production support.

RJ Lee Group maintains a visible and respected reputation within the legal community, having offered scientific support in civil litigation matters for nearly 30 years. 

  • Product Liability 
  • Toxic Tort
  • Construction Defect
  • Fugitive Emission
  • Personal Injury
  • Patent Infringement
  • Contract Disputes
  • Insurance Subrogation

Subject Matter Experts

From our core business of providing scientific solutions to our clients, we have developed innovative products. Some are produced internally, and some have arisen from partnerships with other research organizations. 

For example, we build lab software solutions to help manage and streamline your labs data, and environmental testing products for a variety of applications. 

  • IntelliSEM is a powerful automated particle analysis system.
  • ParticleID is  a customizable cloud hosted web application used to identify foreign particulate matter and  assist with root cause investigations. 

Other products we create count particles and help keep the air and environment safe.

RJ Lee Group is a materials analysis laboratory and consulting company which serves many different industries. We offer scientific solutions such as industrial forensics services, laboratory and testing services, litigation support, and laboratory software to many industries:

Hazardous Drugs and Worker Safety: Emerging Regulations

RJ Lee Group News

April 12, 2013

Approximately 8 million U.S. healthcare workers may be exposed to hazardous drugs, according to NIOSH. Occupational exposures have been shown to cause adverse health effects. Emerging regulations designed to protect workers are based on existing recommendations for safe handling.

In February, California introduced Assembly Bill (AB) 1202 that would require its state Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board to promulgate a standard for hazardous drugs, which includes antineoplastic agents or “chemotherapy.” If enacted, California will become the second state to regulate hazardous drug handling in the workplace, as the state of Washington passed a similar bill in 2011 that required its Department of Labor & Industries to adopt a hazardous drugs rule. Washington has planned a phased implementation of the rule slated to begin January 1, 2014. Similar to the new standard in Washington, the proposed California standard will be based on recommendations laid out by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in 2004. The NIOSH recommendations are designed to prevent occupational exposures by use of industrial hygiene principles and safe drug handling practices, e.g., engineering controls (ventilated cabinets, closed-system drug transfer devices), training, personal protective equipment (double-gloves made from materials that have been tested for chemotherapy resistance, impervious gowns, respiratory protection) and medical surveillance.

Current knowledge of the potential hazard

NIOSH estimates that 8 million U.S. healthcare workers have the potential to be exposed to hazardous drugs. Currently, NIOSH lists 167 hazardous drugs and many more new and investigational formulations may be classified as hazardous. There is clear evidence, documented by many published studies using wipe sampling and laboratory analysis, of widespread drug contamination on work area surfaces in pharmacies where hazardous drugs are prepared and treatment areas where the drugs are administered to patients. There is also evidence that actual exposures do occur, as hazardous drugs and drug metabolites have been detected in the urine of healthcare workers. Such occupational exposures can cause deleterious health effects ranging from skin rashes, headaches and flu-like symptoms to infertility, miscarriage, birth defects, leukemia and other cancers. Unlike some traditional industrial workplace chemicals, the risk assessment process for hazardous drug classes in the occupational setting will be more complex although research showing chromosomal changes in healthcare workers occupationally exposed to a class of hazardous drugs known as “alkylating agents” may help promote the risk assessment process. What remains to be identified are the measurable risks associated with chronic low-level occupational exposures to many different hazardous drug classes over the course of a working lifetime.

Compliance: ‘Shall’ vs. ‘should’

NIOSH is not the only agency with published recommendations for the safe handling of hazardous drugs. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP), the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS), and others have issued similar guidance over the last decade or more. Even though all U.S. healthcare employers should be utilizing available guidance to develop site-specific safe handling programs designed to protect their workers from hazardous drug exposures, a range of compliance currently exists. Washington, and now possibly California, lead the way under the force of regulation such that employers ‘shall comply’ with the recommendations. Other states will likely propose similar legislation, thus stimulating action from healthcare employers across the nation to comply, with the common goal of creating a safer healthcare working environment where hazardous drugs are handled.

Update: The state of North Carolina introduced a similar bill on April 9, 2013, which you can read in its entirety here.

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