Many workers in the rail, construction, and building industries are at risk of developing an asbestos disease. Axiom Medical provides OSHA mandated physical exams, including Asbestos Exam, vision, hearing, and neurological testing to identify an employee’s potential risk for developing an asbestos disease, such as cancer.
What is Asbestos Physical?
Axiom Medical offers a full line of OSHA asbestos physicals for employers looking for an easy way to manage workforces’ health. Our exams include all components required by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) for workers who are exposed to airborne asbestos in the workplace or construction sites.
Our Asbestos Exam includes:
- OSHA-required medical questionnaire
- Review of medical and work history
- Comprehensive medical exam
- Chest X-ray with B Reader
- Pulmonary Function Test (PFT)
- Any additional tests deemed necessary by the physicians
Axiom Medical Advantage
- State-of-the-art employee testing with mobile lab options
- OSHA-trained medical technicians and nurse practitioners
- OSHA-compliant physicals and asbestos testing
- Other employee health management services, including COVID-19 management, Occupational Health, and Injury Case Management
Why Should Your Employee Undergo Asbestos Exam?
As asbestos is harmful material, inhalation of asbestos fibers can be hazardous. Even short-term exposure can lead to some severe health complications. There is secondary exposure to asbestos where family members of construction workers have been sickened by the asbestos fibers on their clothing. Since there is no safe level of exposure, workers, when exposed to asbestos, are always at a higher risk of contracting an asbestos-related disease. Considering the dangerous outcome of asbestos exposure, employees working on construction sites must undergo asbestos testing as required.
Levels of Exposure:
Worksites with asbestos particles or emitted asbestos in aerosols pose a health risk. Considering the lethal nature of asbestos particles and fibers, the federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) established two levels of exposure to help protect construction workers handling asbestos-containing materials. There is no “safe” level of asbestos exposure.
There are two exposure limits: the permissible exposure limit (PEL) and the excursion limit.
Permissible exposure limit (PEL) – This limit defines asbestos exposure as an airborne concentration that should not exceed 0.1 fibers per cubic centimeter of air (0.1 f/cc) averaged over a regular eight-hour workday.
Excursion limit – The second limit established by OSHA defines asbestos airborne concentration not to exceed 1.0 fibers per cubic centimeter of air (1.0 f/cc) averaged over a 30-minutes of the sampling period.
The following agencies also enforce the established limits by both federal and state regulations.
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- California Air Resources Board (CARB)
- Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC)
- Local Air Districts (APCD/AQMD)
- Occupational Safety and Health Regulations (OSHA)
- Cal/OSHA — Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH)
Who Might Be Exposed to Asbestos?
Those who work in the renovation, demolition, and construction industries are at risk of asbestos exposure, either directly or indirectly. Some of the construction materials containing asbestos expose the workers to the fibers directly. However, their families are also at risk of exposure because of the asbestos microparticles on their clothes. Here is a list of construction-related workers who may be exposed to asbestos on the job.
- Bricklayers, carpenters, and demolition contractors
- Drywall tapers, earthmovers/graders
- Electricians, floor coverers, fumigators
- General building maintenance workers, general manufactured housing contractors
- Glaziers, heat and frost insulators
- Heating/air-conditioning workers and home improvement contractors
- Janitorial workers, laborers, landscapers, and operating engineers
- Painters/decorators, plasterers, plumbers, and renovators
How Does Exposure to Asbestos Occur?
Construction materials containing asbestos releases asbestos fibers into the air. Typically, asbestos fiber is microscopic and cannot be seen with the naked eye. Due to the asbestos fibers’ light-weight nature, these can pass through clothes, windows, and vacuum cleaner filters and escape into the air. These fibers can stay airborne for many hours even after the site cleaning, thus increasing the extent of asbestos exposure for individuals working within the contaminated area.
Asbestos Training Requirements:
As per the OSHA and Cal/OSHA requirements, all asbestos worksite employers are responsible for training their employees about the detrimental effects of asbestos. Employers are also required to provide their worksite employees with health insurance to cover the medical examinations and monitoring costs as required by law.
Federal and state regulations also require an employer to institute a free workplace training program for all employees likely to be exposed to asbestos at the work site over the permissible exposure limit defined by OSHA. This is mandatory for all employees who perform Class I through Class IV asbestos operations. Employers are also responsible for ensuring employee participation in this training program.
Reporting Asbestos Exposure Incidents:
Cal/OSHA (DOSH) mandates workplace asbestos exposure incident reporting for any employee exposed to asbestos above the permissible exposure limit (PEL). All reporting must be made within five days of discovering the worksite exposure, and exposed workers must be notified in writing as soon as possible.
Axiom Medical can help employers like you in implementing workplace training and asbestos physical exams. Our experienced and licensed medical practitioners will oversee the process to meet your workplace healthcare goals while staying compliant.
They Said It!
I believe with confidence that we are reaching all of our expected goals by bringing Axiom on as an outsourced case management solution.
Axiom has helped us closely monitor the injured employee’s progress through the medical treatment process. Early treatment has kept our employees at work when in the past they would have likely taken time off or been placed off by a physician.
I recommend Axiom because their Nurse Case Management Team is their biggest asset. They are accessible, give great reports and are responsive to our needs.