When determining whether PPE should be used during the administration of antineoplastics including chemotherapy, immunotherapy and biologics, it is best to first reference the NIOSH List of Hazardous Drugs. However, little is known about the long-term effects of many of the newly-approved immunotherapy and biologics used in practice. It is recommended that when the structure and toxicity proﬁles of new drugs mimic existing drugs determined hazardous, that they too be treated as such (NIOSH, 2004).
ONS produced an algorithm to help clinicians determine if PPE are needed during the administration of checkpoint inhibitors, and encourages nurses to consider if the administration area could potentially be contaminated with HDs, if the treatment regimen contains known HDs in addition to immunotherapy and biologics, and the properties of the agents being administered.
Each institution should determine if any medications being administered within the organization outside of those on the list are considered hazardous. Many institutions have their own list in addition to the NIOSH list.
Additional resources for review can be found within:
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. (2004). NIOSH alert: Preventing occupational exposures to antineoplastic and other hazardous drugs in health care settings (DHHS [NIOSH] Publication No. 2004-165). Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov /niosh/docs/2004-165