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Risk assessment: 5 Vital steps to ensuring safety

Risk rating and Risk levels (how to determine risk rating and risk levels)

Firstly you must assess the likelihood. What is the chance in the period of a year that an untoward incident or an injury will occur due to the hazard. This can be given a number rating in terms of likelihood:

Likelihood Number
Rare 1
Unlikely 2
Possible 3
Likely 4
Almost Certain 5

Then you must assess the consequences associated with the risk. In the even of an untoward incident or an injury how severe would the consequences be? This can again be given a number rating in a similar way to the above:

Likelihood Number
Insignificant 1
Minor 2
Moderate 3
Major 4
Catastrophic 5


Risk rating can be calculated by multiplying the likelihood and the consequences

Likelihood x Consequences

Risk level: If this number is, or is in excess of 10, the risk must be eliminated immediately

Risks associated with common hazards in the cytology laboratory

Hazard Risk
Electrical equipment Spark and fire
Glass and plastic Cuts  and infection
Needle stick (FNA) Infection (HIV, HepB)
Unfixed cellular material Contact with  eye or skin  as result of
  spillage or leakage
Alcohol , xylene Flammable
Giemsa stain Corrosive ,irritant
Papanicolaou stain Hydrochloric acid corrosive