8.2 Working with bio-hazardous material (human material, microbiological agents, plant pathogens)
Under COSHH Regulations in the Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) guidelines, a risk assessment must be performed on all projects involving bio-hazardous material.
In addition to the general laboratory working practices, the following should be observed:
8.2.1 For unscreened human material
Work in the Containment Level 2 laboratory, which has restricted access.
Wear a laboratory coat and gloves.
Avoid sharps (e.g. needles, glass Pasteurs) where possible.
Work only in the clearly identified, designated safety cabinets.
Dispose of all solid waste in autoclave bins by autoclaving and then via the clinical waste route.
Dispose of liquid waste by adding Virkon (or equivalent sterilising) powder to a concentration of 1%, mix, and leave for a minimum of 10 minutes, and wash down the drain with copious amounts of water.
Disinfect the work area after use with 1% Virkon solution by wiping over and leaving to dry.
Disinfect all contaminated glassware using freshly made 1% Virkon solution before placing for wash-up.
Centrifuge only in sealed safety buckets.
Correct usage of centrifuges and rotors must be observed.
Ensure that you are trained by a competent person.
Hazards are caused by incorrect balancing of tubes, leakage from a broken or collapsed tube within the rotor or aerosol production from the tubes themselves.
Sealed buckets should be used for hazardous material in a centrifuge without an airflow (check the manual).
Allow 2 minutes after a rotor comes to rest before opening the lid of the centrifuge, to allow any aerosol to settle.
Appropriate decontamination (based on the agent involved) should be carried out.