March 29, 2019

Denver, CO – Governor Polis recently signed into law HB19-1041, Require Surgical Smoke Protection Policies, a bill sponsored by Senator Robert Rodriguez (D-Denver) to prevent human exposure to surgical smoke through the use of a surgical smoke evacuation system during any planned surgical procedure that is likely to generate surgical smoke.

“Surgical medical devices can emit harmful toxic gas, and enacting surgical smoke protection policies like this one will prevent these emissions in hospitals,” said Senator Rodriguez. “This bill will help keep patients and healthcare workers safe from harmful emissions from surgical equipment.”

HB19-1041 will implement a surgical smoke evacuation system during any surgical procedure that is likely to generate surgical smoke. Surgical smoke contains toxic gases as well as microscopic particles that can elude surgical masks. These emissions have been shown to cause respiratory problems for those who inhale them.

“I’m pleased to be able to work with Representative Buckner on this bill to decrease the occupational hazards for surgical nurses and physicians,” added Senator Rodriguez. “I’d especially like to credit the nurses who brought this need to our attention during the last legislative session.”

HB19-1041, sponsored by Representative Janet Buckner (D-Arapahoe), passed the Colorado House of Representatives by a vote of 53-11 on January 28, 2019. It passed the Colorado State Senate by a vote of 34-1 on March 14, 2019.

To learn more about HB19-1041, please visit http://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb19-1041.

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