Although the following content is outside the scope of our medical billing services, we wanted to share this important information regarding recent updates to workplace requirements relevant to medical practices. Links to official resources are provided in the content for additional questions you may have beyond this high-level summary, or you can contact OSHA at 1-800-321-6742 or email them HERE.
On June 21, 2021, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) for COVID-19 protocols for healthcare settings. Employers providing healthcare services or healthcare support services will be required to comply with many of these new COVID-19 specific standards outlined in the ETS beginning July 5th.
OSHA did not issue rules specific to the pandemic, opting to rely on general guidelines combined with evolving CDC guidance, until directed to do so by the new administration in April 2021. These new temporary standards cover a wide range of workplace topics and may or may not be applicable depending on a variety of considerations. For the major provisions of the ETS – CLICK HERE.
OSHA has released an eligibility decision guide to assist with determining applicability of the ETS – CLICK HERE.
OSHA is providing a 14-day window beginning June 21st to comply with most of the provisions of the ETS. For physical barriers, ventilation, or training requirements, OSHA is allowing a 30-day window for compliance. OSHA has stated that they will use discretion when enforcing the ETS to avoid citing employers making a good faith effort to comply with the standards.
OSHA will continue to monitor COVID-19 trends as the pandemic continues to evolve and make updates to the ETS accordingly.
OSHA Resources for the Emergency Temporary Standard
As always, ADVOCATE will continue to keep you informed on the issues impacting medical groups as they develop.
Manager, Regulatory Affairs