Safety and Health Specialist II, Biological Safety Division at Duke University

Posted in Other 10 days ago.

Location: Durham, North Carolina

Job Description:

Safety and Health Specialist II, Biological Safety Division

Primary Purpose of Organizational Unit: The Occupational and Environmental Safety Office (OESO) provides the focus for the administration of all safety programs to Duke University, Duke University Medical Center, and Duke University Health System. OESO has the responsibility for developing institutional safety plans and policies; providing information and training to meet all regulatory requirements; providing technical consultation and guidance; conducting exposure and risk assessments; conducting safety audits; monitoring compliance with all safety policies; and investigating accidents, injuries, and reported unsafe conditions.

Specific to the Biological Safety Division: The Biological Safety Division addresses employee safety, training, policies, and other concerns regarding occupational exposure to biological agents such as bloodborne pathogens (HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, etc.), and tuberculosis (TB). This is accomplished through the development and implementation of policies and procedures that are intended to provide guidance for worker safety when handling biological agents. These policies are based on the applicable regulatory requirements or current safety guidelines.

Primary Purpose of Position: The Biological Safety Division helps coordinate the programs for evaluating, controlling, or eliminating both health and safety hazards in the medical center and university environments. The Safety and Health Specialist uses the principles of recognition, prevention, control, and monitoring to assure employees use the proper techniques to protect themselves and others from the risks associated with exposure to biological agents. Additionally, the Safety and Health Specialist provides biological safety training and instruction to university and medical center personnel and performs a variety of duties related to the development of safety policies and programs. This position reports directly to the Director of the Biological Safety Division of the OESO.

General Duties and Responsibilities

In addition to the primary duties, the Safety and Health Specialist II will:

  • Serve as a primary resource regarding health and safety within the laboratory environment

  • Conduct laboratory safety audits in both research, clinical, and teaching laboratories---specifically in BSL2/BSL3 environments.

  • Performs a variety of duties related to the prevention, control, and monitoring of occupational exposure to biological agents.

  • Communicate recommendations (verbal and written) for improvement to the laboratory regarding safety of laboratory staff.

  • Develop and provide various laboratory safety training programs; training and application of safety requirements for individualized work environments are communicated to lab employees.

  • Communicate federal, state and local regulations accurately and effectively to insure safety compliance.

  • Perform accident investigations and work with departments to correct safety hazards and develop preventative procedures.

  • Perform Job Hazard and/or Procedural Assessments and recommend measures to control exposures, including substitution of less hazardous materials, personal protective equipment (PPE), work practice changes, and engineering controls. Provide follow-up assessment of recommendations.

  • Make recommendations with respect to equipment purchase, engineering controls, workspace planning and work process planning.

  • Develop reports documenting observations, sampling results, and recommendations for OESO and Duke independently. Assist lower level employees in developing reports and recommendations. Compile and present reports to management related to safety and health activities.

  • Provide solutions to a variety of problems where analysis of data requires evaluation of identifiable factors. Exercise judgment within defined policies and/or parameters in selecting methods and techniques for obtaining solutions.

  • Review planned expansion, modifications, or closures of facilities which affect occupational safety. Contribute to the design of new laboratory facilities where hazardous materials will be used or hazardous processes will be located.

  • Serve as a member of the OESO spill response team, which includes response on weekends and after regular business hours on a rotating schedule.

Preferred Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Must have a basic knowledge of chemical and biological hazards in the laboratory environment.

  • Must be familiar with applicable laboratory safety regulations and guidelines, including OSHA's Bloodborne Pathogen, Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemical in Laboratories, and Hazard Communication standards; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/National Institutes of Health (NIH) Guidelines for Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories; the NIH Recombinant DNA Guidelines; the International Transport Aviation Association and the Department of Transportation's Guidelines for shipping biological materials; CLIA and CAP standards and other OSHA regulations or CDC/NIH Guidelines as necessary.

  • Must communicate and work cooperatively with personnel in diverse positions, including professors, researchers, lab technicians, engineering and operations/facilities maintenance personnel, administrators, and regulators to apply regulatory requirements or guidelines to the unique environment of the research or clinical laboratory.

  • Creative problem solving to recognize and analyze needs and develop programs to address needs.

  • Must have excellent written and verbal communication skills.

Preferred Education:

  • Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science, Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Engineering or a related field.

  • Master's degree in Environmental Science, Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Engineering or related field is preferred, but not required.

Preferred Degrees, Licensure, and/or Certification:

  • Must have a valid driver's license.

  • Certification preferred but not required.

  • Must have completed or be able to complete First Responder- Operations Level Training (29 CFR 1910.120) within 90 days of hire.

Required Minimum Qualifications
Education: Bachelor of Science in Occupational Health and Safety, Environmental Science, Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Engineering, Fire Protection or related field.
Experience: Three years of experience for level 2.
Degrees, Licensure, and/or Certification:Valid driver's license. Must have completed or be able to complete First Responder-Operations Level Training (29 CFR 1910.120). Professional certification preferred for level 2.

Fire Safety- ability to obtain CFPS certification within two years of hire. Ability to obtain Pre-Qualification, NC Code Officials Board, Fire Prevention-Level I within one year of hire.

Physically able to serve on a HAZMAT spill response team.

Developed professional presentation skills.
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

Knowledge of federal, state and local laws and regulations pertaining to occupational safety and health.

Knowledge of organizational and personnel management skills.

Creative problem solving to recognize and analyze needs and assist in the development of programs to address needs.

Excellent written and oral communication skills.

Ability to use computer database and spreadsheet programs.

Basic knowledge of occupational safety, industrial hygiene principles and/or ergonomics.

Ability to locate and use appropriate technical resources in occupational safety and health.

Ability to lift and carry heavy materials and equipment.

Physically able to serve on a HAZMAT spill response team.

Developed professional presentation skills.
Distinguishing Characteristics of this Level


Job Level: F1

Duke is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to providing employment opportunity without regard to an individual's age, color, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status.

Duke aspires to create a community built on collaboration, innovation, creativity, and belonging. Our collective success depends on the robust exchange of ideas-an exchange that is best when the rich diversity of our perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences flourishes. To achieve this exchange, it is essential that all members of the community feel secure and welcome, that the contributions of all individuals are respected, and that all voices are heard. All members of our community have a responsibility to uphold these values.

Essential Physical Job Functions: Certain jobs at Duke University and Duke University Health System may include essential job functions that require specific physical and/or mental abilities. Additional information and provision for requests for reasonable accommodation will be provided by each hiring department.