The Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) exempts dentistry, as a low-risk industry, from…
Our blog post from April 25, 2022, lists Cal/OSHA’s third revisions to the COVID-19 Prevention Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS), which took effect on May 6, 2022 and will expire on December 31, 2022. One of the changes concerns the isolation and quarantine criteria, which now automatically defers in real-time to reflect current California Department of Public Health (CDPH) guidelines.
The CDPH’s current isolation and quarantine guidelines for healthcare settings are as follows:
- Quarantine – COVID-19 Close Contact – An unvaccinated employee who had a close contact (in the workplace or outside of the workplace) should be excluded from work for 5 days, which would end after day 5 if asymptomatic AND negative COVID-19 test (home antigen test ok). If unable to test, quarantine may end after day 10 if still asymptomatic. If the unvaccinated employee becomes symptomatic, immediately test and then isolate if positive. A fully vaccinated (with booster) employee who had a close contact, does not need to be excluded from work but should test immediately and at 3-5 days.
- Isolation – COVID-19 Case – An employee, regardless of vaccination status, who tests positive for COVID-19 must be excluded from the workplace for at least 5 days after start of symptoms or after date of first positive test if asymptomatic. Isolation can end and the employee may return to the workplace after day 5 if symptoms are not present or are resolving, AND testing on Day 5 or later is negative. If unable to test or testing positive on Day 5 (or later), isolation can end after Day 10 if fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medications. If symptoms, other than fever, are not resolving, continue to isolate until symptoms are resolving or until after Day 10. The employee must wear face coverings around others for a total of 10 days after the positive test.
Testing and quarantining is not required for employees who previously had COVID-19 within the last 90 days unless symptoms start, in which case they should isolate and get tested.
To help employers comply with the revised ETS, Cal/OSHA updated its guidance in its Cal/OSHA ETS FAQ. Note that the CDPH isolation and quarantine guidelines referenced in the ETS FAQ does not apply to healthcare facilities, including dental offices.
OSHA Review, Inc. will continue to provide guidance on COVID-19 as new information and clarification for California dental settings becomes available.
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.