Employee Health and Safety Policy

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POLICY NO: 1003
EFFECTIVE DATE: 10/17/03 
REVISED DATE:

Including Drug Free Workplace; Smoking and Other Use of Tobacco; AIDS, HIV, and Other Bloodborne Pathogens

Basis of the Policy

The University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) Employee Health and Safety Policy addresses three areas: drug-free workplace; smoking and other use of tobacco; and AIDS, HIV, and other bloodborne pathogens. The University of Nebraska desires to provide an alcohol and drug-free, healthy, safe, and secure work environment and has established a code of conduct for all campuses of the University of Nebraska system. UNMC is committed to the promotion of health and the prevention of disease. Smoking is a major cause of preventable diseases. UNMC protects the rights and welfare of employees, staff, students, volunteers, and patients in addressing employment concerns about AIDS, HIV infection, and other bloodborne pathogens. UNMC will be guided by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) mandates, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, and legal requirements. UNMC will also consider The Nebraska Medical Center's infection control policies in the development of campus regulations to prevent the spread of potentially infectious agents. University of Nebraska Employee Policies and Practices

Drug-Free Workplace

UNMC prohibits employees from the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of alcohol and/or a controlled substance on UNMC property. The term “substance” refers to drug or chemical compounds that are controlled by local, state, or federal law. UNMC complies with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, as amended. Conviction of a crime related to the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation or use of alcohol and/or a controlled substance may result in a fine, a prison sentence, or both. Copies of relevant laws and sanctions are available for review in the Human Resources – Employee Relations office and in UNMC Human Resources Procedures. Statement of Understanding

UNMC Position on Chemical Dependency

UNMC supports the position that chemical dependency is a disease that can endanger the health and well being of students, employees, and faculty and can have a negative effect on the public they serve. UNMC advocates treatment and rehabilitation for affected students, employees, and faculty in a manner that first protects the public, while allowing a reasonable opportunity for recovery and re-entry into the workplace/classroom. Chemical dependency is recognized as a disease, and employee relations issues will be administered from this philosophy and in accordance with all legal requirements of state and federal law. UNMC does not illegally discriminate in its academic program or employment practices against individuals who are in recovery from chemical dependency. UNMC takes a community leadership role in health care professional education, research, and public education about substance use, abuse, and dependency. UNMC has established a Faculty/Employee Assistance Program (F/EAP).

Requirements of Employees for the Drug-free Workplace

Compliance with this policy is a term and condition of employment. UNMC employees must notify their department heads of any criminal drug statute convictions for violations occurring in the workplace no later than five (5) days after such conviction. Under the compliance provisions of the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988, UNMC shall notify the appropriate federal agency within ten (10) days of receiving notice of a criminal conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace for employees who are paid under federally-funded grants.

Employment Actions as Part of the Drug-free Workplace

UNMC employees will be subject to disciplinary action as outlined in the Performance Management Procedures. Any violation of this policy, including unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of a controlled substance on the UNMC campus, any criminal drug statute conviction for a violation occurring in the workplace, or working while under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, can result in disciplinary actions up to and including termination for cause. As a part of Written Notice of workplace behavior or work product, supervisors and managers may require that the employee meet with and follow recommendations made by the F/EAP staff. F/EAP recommendations, which may be required as a condition of continued employment, include the following: Completion of chemical dependency and/or psychological evaluations and compliance with recommendations Completion of an inpatient or outpatient chemical dependency treatment program Involvement in support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, etc., follow up in the F/EAP Random blood and/or urine drug screens UNMC employees are expected to meet performance standards and comply with UNMC policies and procedures; and supervisors and managers should administer disciplinary action, up to and including termination, according to the Performance Management Procedures.

Smoking and Other Use of Tobacco

Smoking and other use of tobacco by any person is not permitted on the UNMC campus or in University owned vehicles except in specifically designated smoking shelters located outside of the campus buildings, away from operable windows, doors and air intakes.

AIDS, HIV, and Other Bloodborne Pathogens

See UNMC Policy No. 2004, Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure. UNMC employees are expected to care for HIV and other bloodborne pathogen-infected patients on the same basis as other patients. Employees may not refuse to care for a patient solely because the patient has AIDS, HIV infection, or other bloodborne pathogens. If, after education and counseling, an employee refuses to participate in the care of a patient with AIDS, HIV, or other bloodborne pathogens, appropriate employment actions, under UNMC Policy No. 1098, Corrective and Disciplinary Action will be instituted. Employees are responsible for completing mandatory bloodborne pathogens training, if required for their individual job. Failure to complete required mandatory training may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Employees who may have an infectious disease should refer to The Nebraska Medical Center/UMA infection control guidelines. An employee with an infection that could be communicated to an HIV-infected patient will be relieved of the responsibility of providing care to HIV-infected patients in a manner consistent with The Nebraska Medical Center/UMA infection control policy. UNMC provides the protective measures recommended by CDC and OSHA and educates employees in the use of such protective measures. Employees are required to follow “standard precautions” while caring for patients. Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control Plan Manual and Appendices

Additional Information

For additional information, contact Human Resources, Employee Relations, 559-5827, or see the Employee Health and Safety Procedures. Employee Health and Safety Procedures / Performance Management Procedures / UNMC Policy No. 2004, Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Policy / Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control Plan Manual / Corrective and Disciplinary Action Form