Environmental Health and Safety Programs

Safety Program Overviews
Biological and Chemical MR
Fire Occupational
Laser  Radiation

Biological and Chemical Safety

The Biological and Chemical Safety Office maintains regulatory compliance to support research, teaching, and service endeavors conducted at UT Southwestern Medical Center and its affiliated hospitals.

Biological and Chemical Safety has responsibilities in several areas, each with a specific regulatory law framework that reflects a combination of practices involving policies, action plans, inspections, sample testing, teaching/training, and program documentation. Biological and Chemical Safety regulates all use of infectious substances, pathogens, and chemicals. The staff is responsible for all lab inspections and audits in order to ensure safety and compliance in dealing with these hazardous materials.

Fire Safety

The Fire Safety Program helps prevent fires by minimizing or eliminating fire hazards on campus. Fire Safety educates faculty, staff, and students on fire prevention and protection, life safety, emergency preparedness, and hands-on fire extinguisher training. Other Fire Safety duties include protecting life and property and ensuring that UT Southwestern complies with National Fire Codes.

Laser Safety

Laser Safety regulates all staff, faculty, and residents who use lasers at UT Southwestern University Hospitals, Children’s Medical Center Dallas, Parkland Memorial Hospital, and the VA North Texas Health Care System. Laser Safety staff evaluates recommendations for the purchase, maintenance, repair, documentation, registration, utilization, disposal, and administration of all medical lasers.

Laser Safety also monitors operations of all lasers to ensure compliance with national, state, and institutional regulations and policies. 

MR Safety

The Magnetic Resonance (MR) Safety Program strives to prevent workplace injuries. MR encourages voluntary compliance with the American College of Radiology. The team offers white papers on MR Safe Practices and provides safety training on pertinent topics – including hazard zone identification, access requirements, and identification of ferromagnetic and non-ferromagnetic equipment. MR Safety staff also audits the MR environment for both research and clinical settings to suggest safety improvements.

Occupational Safety

The Occupational Safety Program promotes a safe work environment and assists to prevent workplace injuries. The Program encourages voluntary compliance with OSHA standards, provides safety training on pertinent topics including office/lab safety and injury prevention, and conducts investigations of Workers' Compensation Insurance injury claims.

Other duties include:

  • Inspect various occupancy types for code compliance and conduct periodic inspections of labs and offices. 
  • Assist with fire and life safety evacuation drills to ensure the safety of everyone on campus. 

Radiation Safety

The Radiation Safety Program provides institutional support, service, and oversight for the receipt, use, and disposal of radioactive materials and X-ray producing equipment, as well as compliance with applicable state and federal regulations. 

Radiation Safety is responsible for the proper licensing and registration of regulated sources of radiation and liaison activities with pertinent regulatory agencies. These services include:

  • Oversee mandated Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) functions.
  • Assist the performance of the Institutional Radiation Safety Committee (RSC) and its associated subcommittees.
  • Monitor employee radiation exposures; oversight and audit of the use of sources of radiation.

Our services are extended to all UT Southwestern hospitals and clinics, medical research laboratories, and affiliated hospitals such as Parkland Memorial Hospital and Children’s Medical Center.