Safety in the Healthcare Facility — Part 1
It is difficult to cover in one installment all aspects of a particular topic on the certification test. And as many topics as possible need to be covered. As a result, we are jumping among topics, with time in between segments of each of those topics. For example, Power Supplies Part 2 and Part 3 — the follow-up to February’s Power Supplies Part 1 — will appear later this year, as will the second part of this month’s article dealing with safety. Based on experience, “jumping around” helps information “stick” in readers’ minds.

The Safety in the Health Care Facility portion of the exam accounts for approximately 17 percent or 20 to 25 questions on the test. There are six main subsections to this part of the test.

Electrical section
Points to remember: The difference between micro and macro shock is this: Macro you feel, and micro you don’t. Also, micro shock has a path through the skin, which is the first line of defense of the body against an electric shock.

Also, remember that the “let go” current of a shock is 14mA, in most people. You also need to review the “safe” level difference between the AAMI (Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation)/ANSI (American National Standards Institute) and NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) current limits on equipment. They may now be the same, but check them to be sure. The ground resistance was different — 0.5 ohm in AAMI/ANSI and 0.15 ohm in NFPA — then they became the same. Now, however, NFPA is proposing to go back to the 0.15 ohm, so be sure to check the latest standards. Also remember that the frequency of the current is 60Hz. If the frequency is higher, the limits are higher.

To purchase the full text of this article, click here…