Treatment options on jobs sites

#1

I’ve recently started a new job where I’ll be going out on customer site visits where personal protective equipment (PPE) will be required, specifically PPE for arc flash hazards. Fortunately, I should only be going on these a few times per year.

While I’m not going to have to do a full suit up, I will still be required to have no conductive material (no metal, no watches, no cell phones, etc.) and no plastic or synthetic material on my person while on the job site. This seems to imply that I will have to remove my infusion site, CGM, and pump completely while there.

I can’t be the only one who had needed to figure this out. So, what have you done for situations like this?

#2

Sounds interesting!

How long will you be spending on the job sites?

#3

Generally it will be between 8 and 12 hours at a time.

#4

Will you be able to leave for brief periods of time?

You could unplug from your pump on these days and give long-acting insulin instead, but you’ll need to be able to access short-acting for food and corrections.

No metal means no shots, and no plastic means you couldn’t even use Afrezza.

#5

I should be able to do long acting for the day. I was going to talk to my endocrinologist about it at my next appointment. I’m just not a big fan of having to do it, and then flying blind without a CGM.

#7

Generally requirements for devices are put into place to minimize risk to people and to prevent unnecessary equipment from being brought into the area. I’ve always been able to carry my medical equipment into these areas, including those with Arc Flash hazards. Speak with your employer and the HSE team about it and there is likely a process already in place.

I travel a lot for work all over the world, including to many areas of high risk where full PPE is required, including FRC. I’ve been in surface and underground mines, offshore on vessels and oil platforms/rigs. Some of the most hazardous locations you can imagine, some I’m not even allowed to mention here. :laughing:

Is the area you’re going to be working in specifically a Class 1/Div 1 (ATEX Zone 1) or a Class 1/Div 2 (ATEX Zone 2) area? Those are the toughest areas to get approvals for, but still possible - usually it’s the charging circuits that are hazardous, so you just don’t plug anything in while you’re within the hazard area. Sometimes it’s just a matter of just a few “high risk” areas that you’re not allowed in, but the general space is fine.

EDIT:

I wanted to add, remember that your medical equipment is a necessity, not an option! Whether it’s an insulin pump and CGM, or your glucose meter and insulin pen, its all the same. It’s hazardous for you, and potentially others, for you not to have it with you when you need it.

As a side note, I’m always allowed to carry snacks with me too - no matter where. Something else to keep in mind if you discuss it with your employer/HSE Team.

2 Likes
#8

I wanted to get a feel for what I’m getting myself into before posing the question to or safety team.

It sounds like on most instances, I’ll only need PPE rated for 4 cal/cm2 or less. On rare occasions, I might need to be suited up with a rating of 25 cal/cm2, but it sounds like this is an “every few years” type of situation.

#9

In your case, it may be as simple as always ensuring that your insulin pump and CGM is under a layer of PPE and not out in the open air unnecessarily. So this might prevent you from wearing a belt clip, but you’d still be able to have the device on your person. :slight_smile:

#10

Thanks for your help!

#11

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