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Minimize Exposure to Hazardous Drugs in the Compounding Pharmacy

Handling hazardous drugs in the compounding pharmacy, per USP chapter <800> guidelines, involves strategic workflow strategies with the goal of minimizing personnel and environmental exposure. In our previous article, "Can A Class I and Class II Biological Safety Cabinet be in the Same Sterile Hazardous Room” we discussed varying workflow methods and the potential for exposure points during the hazardous drug (HD) pre-sterilization process. Similarly, in our article titled “Facility and Engineering Controls Using USP 800 Guidelines” we discussed the synergistic relationship between the containment primary engineering control (C-PEC) and Good Lab Practices (GLP), mostly focusing on non-sterile rooms. The purpose of this article is to pull all of those chemical handlings and compounding workflow strategies together into a more sequential model in an effort to minimize personnel and environmental exposure. The main focus of this article is on nonsterile hazardous drug handling processes, but the principles of GLP are applicable with both sterile and nonsterile chemical handling. We would also make the assertion that there is a higher likelihood of surface and airborne contamination in the non-sterile compounding rooms due to the volume and activity of dry powders being handled.