COVID-19: OSHA Recording Requirements Updated for All Employers

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All Employers Subject to OSHA

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May 26, 2020

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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued updated enforcement guidance for recording COVID-19 illnesses. “The guidance is intended to be time-limited to the current COVID-19 public health crisis.” Specifically, employers are responsible for recording cases of COVID-19, if:

  1. The case is a confirmed case of COVID-19, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC);
  2. The case is “work-related” (i.e., if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing injury or illness); and
  3. The case involves one or more of the general recording criteria, such as death, days away from work, restricted work or transfer to another job, medical treatment beyond first aid, or loss of consciousness.

Moreover, all employers are responsible for conducting a reasonable analysis of work-relatedness. OSHA will evaluate employers’ efforts in making work-related determinations based on the following considerations:

  • The reasonableness of the employer’s investigation into work-relatedness.
  • The evidence available to the employer.
  • The evidence that a COVID-19 illness was contracted at work.

Employers are not required to record a COVID-19 illness, only after conducting a “reasonable and good faith inquiry” as described in the guidance, if they cannot determine whether it is more likely than not that exposure in the workplace played a causal role with respect to a particular case of COVID-19. The guidance also reminds employers that if an employee voluntarily requests that his or her name not be entered on the log, the employer must comply.

Action Items

  1. Review the updated guidance here.
  2. Update injury and illness recording procedures.
  3. Have managers trained on the new requirements.
  4. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2020 ManagEase

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