The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s emergency temporary safety standard (ETS) for healthcare employers took effect July 6. Affected employers have 30 days to come into compliance with the new rule. To assist with these efforts, OSHA recently released several guidance documents.
First, OSHA issued a series of COVID-19 control plan templates, including form checklists, hazard analyses, and employee communication tools. While each workplace requires an individual review of potential risks and responses, the tools provide model documents that can be adapted for purposes of complying with the ETS’s written program requirements.
Also, OSHA released a flowchart that can be used by ambulatory care and other healthcare facilities to determine whether they are subject to the ETS. If the facility screens for and strictly refuses entry to persons who potentially have COVID-19, they may be exempt from the ETS’s requirements. Workplaces with fully vaccinated employee populations may also be able to avoid many of the compliance obligations. The new OSHA guidance documents can be found here.