The Bloodborne Pathogen Standard: An Overview

Code of Federal Regulations

In 1990, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimated that occupational exposures to bloodborne pathogens caused more than 200 deaths and 9,000 bloodborne infections every year. To help protect workers from this serious workplace hazard, OSHA published the Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens Standard on December 6, 1991. The purpose of this standard is to protect workers by limiting occupational exposure to blood and other potentially infectious materials.

In 2000, the Needlestick Safety and Prevention Act (Public Law 106-430) mandated that OSHA clarify and revise the Bloodborne Pathogens Standard to address the implementation of safer needle devices. OSHA published the revised standard, which included such new requirements as the use of safer needle devices and maintaining a log of contaminated needlestick injuries, in the Federal Register in January 2001. The revised standard became effective in April 2001.

The Bloodborne Pathogen standard is located in Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations (29 CFR), Part 1910.1030.

View the OSHA's Bloodborne Pathogens Standard (opens new browser window or tab)