4600 Bloodborne Pathogens; Exposure Control

Original Date: 9/14/1994 * Last Revision Effective: 3/20/2024
Policy Contact: Vice President, Human Resources


The OSHA standard guidelines (29 CFR 1910.1030) were designed to cover all workers in health care and public safety occupations who may have occupational exposure to blood and other potentially infectious materials. OSHA has not attempted to list all occupations where exposure could occur.

The Bellevue College exposure control program identifies job classifications which are covered by the standard.

Since accidental exposure to blood or other potentially infectious substances may occur in any work setting, all employees need to be aware of accident prevention techniques and the specific steps to be implemented in seeking assistance following any potential exposure incident.

It is the policy of Bellevue College to provide a safe work environment for all employees. To protect employees from the dangers associated with the handling of potentially infectious materials, Bellevue College will develop and manage an exposure control program in compliance with WAC 296-823, Occupational Exposure to Bloodborne Pathogens.



  • means human blood, human blood components, and products made from human blood.

Bloodborne pathogen

  • means pathogenic microorganisms that are present in human blood and can cause disease in humans.

Contaminated sharps

  • means any contaminated object that can penetrate the skin, including but not limited to needles, scalpels, broken glass, etc.


  • means the use of physical or chemical means to remove, inactivate, or destroy bloodborne pathogens on an item to the point where they are no longer capable of transmitting infectious particles and the item is rendered safe for handling, use, or disposal.

Engineering controls

  • means controls (e.g., sharps disposal containers, self-sheathing needles) that isolate or remove the bloodborne pathogen hazard from the workplace.

Exposure incident

  • means a specific eye, mouth, other mucous membrane, non-intact skin, or parenteral contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials that results from the performance of an employee’s duties.

Potentially infectious material

  • means any body fluid visibly contaminated with blood and all body fluids in situations where it is difficult or impossible to differentiate between body fluids.

Occupational exposure

  • means reasonably anticipated skin, eye, mucous membrane, or parenteral contact with blood or other potentially infections materials that may result from the performance of an employee’s duties.

Personal protective equipment (PPE)

  • means specialized clothing or equipment worn by an employee for protection against a hazard.

Regulated waste

  • means liquid or semi-liquid blood or other potentially infectious materials; contaminated items that would release blood or other potentially infectious materials in a liquid or semi-liquid state if compressed; items that are caked with dried blood or other potentially infectious materials and are capable of releasing these materials during handling; contaminated sharps; and pathological and microbiological wastes containing blood or other potentially infectious materials.

Work practice control

  • means a control that reduces the likelihood of exposure by altering the manner in which a task is performed (e.g., prohibiting recapping of needles by a two-handed technique, wearing gloves to wipe up spilled blood).

Relevant Laws and Other Resources

Bellevue College Procedure #4600P Bloodborne Pathogens; Exposure Control

Revision History

Original 9/14/1994
Revision 5/21/2009; 9/11/2012; 4/21/2015; 3/20/2024

Approved By

Board of Trustees

Last Updated March 20, 2024