Air Fresheners in the hospital

  1. Looking for some information here. Our hospital has air fresheners that can be sprayed to "freshen" the air. These air fresheners literally make me sick. I suffer from asthma and these "fresheners" are really bothersome. I can't imagine what they do to our more sensitive respiratory patients. I am looking for information to support getting rid of these "air fresheners" in the hospital setting. I was wondering if anyone has any references or policies from their facilities regarding "air fresheners" and their impact patients and staff. Thanks.
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    About deespoohbear

    Joined: Aug '01; Posts: 2,276; Likes: 42


  3. by   BrandyBSN
    i dont have any information for you, except that I completely agree that we need to get these changed!

    I dont mind the ones that "neutralize" the air, and dont leave a smell, but the god-awful citrus crap our hospital has makes me want to gag. I cant breath around them. Plus, they really dont take smell away.. you just end up with poop-smelling oranges.

  4. by   nell
    deespoohbear I know what you mean.

    Although I don't have asthma, I am sensitive to a lot of fragrances. Even though our unit is posted with signs that perfumes and colognes aren't allowed (tiny little lungs with problems of their own in our unit...), they are largely ignored.

    Although my co-workers watch out for me (they don't want to have to absorb my assignment if I have to go home, after all) by trying not to use offending products and warning me away from "stinky folks"; management doesn't give a darn. They recently installed fragranced waterless handcleaner all over the place even after several of us told them it caused problems! I sometimes cover up the dispensers (and draw a skull & crossbones) and have brought some non-sickening hand cleaner for people that don't want to bother washing their hands. I have also considered tossing the stuff in the trash - lets see... replacing about 10 of those/day...

    I'm trying to get our infection control person to supply a non-offending brand. If that doesn't happen, I will look into filing a grievance with our union or see if it falls under the ADA - Americans with Disabilities Act.

    Here are some websites with useful info:

    Good luck!
  5. by   deespoohbear
    Glad to see someone who agrees with me. Those "artificial" smells are just sickening to me. And I am not even a bad asthmatic. I have found some information on the chemicals that are in these "air fresheners" and it would make your hair curl. If people knew what we were spraying in the air the would have a fit. I am not a big ecological person either, but this issue has got me fired up!!
  6. by   P_RN
    AMEN, gag, wheeze and all that.

    Even the carpet cleaner would set me off.
  7. by   sunnygirl272
    what about obtaining the msds on the air fresheners? willing to bet it includes the fact that it can act as a resp irritant...
  8. by   sunnygirl272
    Originally posted by sunnygirl272
    what about obtaining the msds on the air fresheners? willing to bet it includes the fact that it can act as a resp irritant...
    ooops...never mind..just checked the osha site...
    "The HCS rule clearly states that where such consumer products are used in the workplace in a manner comparable to normal conditions of consumer use, the chemical would not have to be included in the employer's hazard communication program. However, if a worker is using a consumer product in a manner that results in a duration and frequency of exposure greater than that of normal consumer use, the product would have to be covered in the employer's hazard communication program. "
  9. by   nell
    My golly sunnygirl272! How in the world do you have that info at your fingertips???
  10. by   deespoohbear
    My nurse manager and co-workers are quite aware of my sensitivities to certain fragrances. The day the one room had to be fumigated after the lice and flea infestion I was sent off the floor pronto to lunch. The day we had the mock fire drill they used the dry ice machine on the other end of the hall because they knew I would raise a fuss. Floor stripping days are bad too. I am in the process of gathering information for my manager about fragrances and the harm they can do, but most my info is from organizations with a biased opinion. I need information that is not one sided. Thanks for everyone's input.
  11. by   RN from OZ
    Over inthe land of Oz we are having Tea tree oil misted through our airconditioning system.......supposedly to remove odour and bacteria, as well as fungi far it seems to be working.
  12. by   EFMBholder
    If it is the smells that bother you try a spray called ozium. It does not really have a smell and it does get rid of the most foul odors. I have used it before and have never had a complaint yet... I believe that J&J makes a version. Although I never really checked to see for sure.
    All bleeding eventually stops, and all rythms eventually become recognizable.