In May, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published an interim memorandum on the requirements for recording occupational illnesses, specifically cases of COVID-19. The memorandum is expected to remain in effect until the current COVID-19 public health crisis ends.
While employers with 10 or fewer employees and certain employers in low hazard industries, which includes dentistry, have no COVID-19 recording obligations, they do need to report work-related COVID-19 illnesses that result in a fatality or an employee’s in-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye.
Specifically, dental employers must report the following work-related COVID-19 cases to OSHA (Cal/OSHA in California):
- All fatalities within 8 hours of finding out about them
- All in-patient admissions to the hospital within 24 hours of learning about them.
- All amputations within 24 hours of learning about them.
- All losses of an eye within 24 hours of finding out about them.
Employers can report fatalities/serious injuries to OSHA via telephone to the nearest OSHA Area Office or 24-hour hotline at 1-800-321-OSHA. Additionally, employers can report fatalities/serious injuries online using OSHA’s online reporting form.
Since 1992, OSHA Review, Inc. has provided dental professionals with comprehensive programs to support regulatory compliance and infection control. We are a registered continuing education provider in the state of California, specializing in Dental Practice Act, infection control, and OSHA training.