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Cal/OSHA Updates to COVID-19 Prevention Requirements

On January 9, 2024, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) updated its COVID-19 isolation guidance for California. These changes to the isolation requirements, which are incorporated into Cal/OSHA’s COVID-19 Prevention Non-Emergency Standard (Title 8 California Code of Regulations Section 3205), apply to workplaces, including dental offices, covered by the Standard.

Updated Isolation Guidance

The CDPH now recommends the following isolation periods:

  • For cases with symptoms, with or without fever, isolate from the day of symptom onset until at least 24 hours have passed. Excluded employees may return when 24 hours have passed with no fever, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and symptoms are mild and improving; OR
  • For cases with no symptoms, there is no infectious period and no recommended isolation. If symptoms develop, the criteria above will apply.

For COVID-19 cases that return to work, employers must continue to provide and ensure returning COVID-19 cases use face coverings until 10 days have passed from the date symptoms began or, for asymptomatic cases who tested positive for COVID-19, from the date of their first positive test. Additionally, when an order to isolate, quarantine, or exclude an employee is issued by a local or state health official, the employee must not return to work until the period of isolation or quarantine is completed or the order is lifted even if the order exceeds the specified exclusion requirements in Cal/OSHA’s COVID-19 Prevention Standard or CDPH recommendations.

Employers can review the most recent guidance on Cal/OSHA’s COVID-19 Prevention Non-Emergency Regulations FAQ page and should update their COVID-19 policies to reflect the latest information. Cal/OSHA’s COVID-19 Prevention Non-Emergency Standard took effect on February 3, 2023, and will remain in effect for two years after the effective date, except for the recordkeeping subsections which will remain in effect for three years.

For our OSHA Review Subscribers… an updated COVID-19 Prevention Plan template form, dated 2024, can be downloaded from our website.

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.


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