Presentation on theme: "Cholinesterase Monitoring Rule Information for Pesticide Handlers September 2010."— Presentation transcript:
Cholinesterase Monitoring Rule Information for Pesticide Handlers September 2010
You Will Learn: What is Cholinesterase? – What is an employer supposed to do for pesticide handlers? – What are the main elements of the cholinesterase monitoring program? – Where can you get more information?
What is Cholinesterase? ( Abbreviated as ChE) Cholinesterase is an important protein in the body that is needed for the functioning of your nervous system. Some pesticides interfere with the function of cholinesterase, meaning that you could become ill from your pesticide exposure.
What Does the ChE Monitoring Rule Do? The rule provides a medical monitoring program to make sure: – That your ChE levels have not dropped and – That you are not at increased risk of experiencing pesticide illness from your pesticide exposure.
Who Is The Rule For? Agricultural pesticide handlers who handle: Category I and II Organophosphate or N-methyl-carbamate pesticides.
Which Pesticides Does the Rule Cover? Toxicity Category I or Toxicity Category II It covers pesticides with labels that say:
Which Pesticides Does the Rule Cover? Organophosphates Guthion Lorsban Imidan Monitor Mocap N-methyl-carbamates Sevin Temik Lannate Vydate For a complete list of all the pesticides covered by the rule click here: Organophosphates/Carbamates Listed Alphabetically by Product NameOrganophosphates/Carbamates Listed Alphabetically by Product Name Examples:
Are You a Pesticide Handler? Pesticide Handlers: Mix, load or apply pesticides Dispose of pesticides or containers Handle open pesticide containers Maintain application equipment Act as a flagger The complete definition for a pesticide “Handler” can be found in the definition section of the Worker Protection Standard: Handler DefinitionHandler Definition
If You Are A Pesticide Handler: Your employer must provide ChE monitoring to you at no cost when you: – Handle the covered pesticides 30 or more hours in any consecutive 30 days. – The first day of handling starts the clock. – A baseline test must be done before start work with pesticides.
If You Are A Pesticide Handler: Your employer must keep records of all hours that you handle Category I and II organophosphate or N-methyl-carbamate pesticides. You and your representatives can see these records.
Are All Handling Hours Included? No. There are two exceptions: Employers do not have to provide testing to employees who handle N-methyl-carbamate pesticides ONLY. If you mix and load using a closed system, those hours do not count toward the 30 hours.
How Does The 30-Day Schedule Work? Your employer has two options: 1. Test you every 30 days no matter how many hours you handle pesticides. OR 2. Test when you handle pesticides 30 or more hours in any consecutive 30 days.
Must You Have A Test ? No – The test includes taking a blood sample Your employer must give you the opportunity to be tested. You make the decision about testing after receiving training on ChE inhibiting pesticides and talking to a doctor or nurse about the benefits and risks of testing. You can decline testing by signing a form.
Can You Change Your Mind Later? Yes – Your employer must then provide you with an opportunity to be tested. If you are handling pesticides at this time you may get a baseline test called a “working baseline”. The medical provider may recommend that you not handle pesticides for a number of days before being tested.
Must I Use My Employer’s Doctor? Yes - Your employer will be paying the cost for all medical services. Only certain information may be shared with your employer. All other medical information remains confidential, including the actual test results.
What Happens To My Test Results? The doctor will tell your employer only that: – You may continue your normal duties, OR – The pesticide handling practices must be evaluated, OR – You must be temporarily removed from exposure & the worker protection program must be evaluated.
When Do Test Results Require Action? A ChE drop of more than 20% from baseline requires a work review to identify and correct exposure problems. The review must look at: – the condition and use of your PPE (coveralls, respirators, gloves etc.) –General sanitation and decontamination practices –Pesticide handling practices Note: “baseline” is the blood test taken before you handle pesticides
Can I Be Removed From Work? Yes, if: Red Blood Cell ChE levels drop 30% or more from baseline OR Serum ChE levels drop 40% or more from baseline Note: There are two kinds of ChE tests: RBC - red blood cells, or Serum – the fluid that is part of blood. Both are done in a laboratory from your blood sample.
When Can I Return To Work? You can return to handling duties when ChE levels return to within 20% of your baseline.
Can I do other work with the same employer? Yes, you can do other types of work for the same employer. You can even handle pesticides that are not cholinesterase-inhibitors. Your job, salary and benefits will be protected for 3 months. – Pay – Seniority – Other rights and benefits
How Long Before ChE Returns to Normal? Plasma cholinesterase levels may return to normal within hours to several days. Red blood cell cholinesterase levels take longer, returning at about 1% per day.
What If I Get Sick From Pesticides? Lowered ChE levels may mean you have been exposed to pesticides. Removal from exposure prevents potential illness. If you do become ill due to exposure, you have the right to file an industrial insurance claim with the Dept. of Labor & Industries.
Can I See My Records? Yes, your employer is required to keep: – Records of time spent handling pesticides – Medical provider (contact info. posted) – Test results (medical provider may keep) – Work recommendations – Work program evaluations – Medical removal dates – Your statements declining the test (if you do)
Will I Be Given Training? Your employer must provide training on the: – Hazards of cholinesterase-inhibiting pesticides. – The purpose and requirements of cholinesterase testing.
How Will This Rule Be Enforced? L&I will collect information from employers and workers in order to evaluate the rule whenever: – Cholinesterase depression is reported. – As part of targeted inspection activities. – Whenever a complaint is received.
About The Cholinesterase Rule You can read the Cholinesterase rule here: Chapter Chapter You can read the Pesticide Worker Protection Standard here: Chapter Chapter More information about Cholinesterase Monitoring
What If I Have More Questions? If you have more questions on your employer’s responsibility to you or you suspect you have been poisoned call: BE-SAFE OR Call your local Labor and Industries office and ask to speak to a compliance officer. Click here to get local office locations and numbers: Local L&I Office LocationLocal L&I Office Location