On Friday April 10, 2020 OSHA issued enforcement guidance related to the recording of cases of COVID-19. COVID-19 is a recordable illness and employers must record cases of COVID-19 if certain conditions are met. One component in this determination is whether the case was work related.
In its recent guidance OSHA advises that, except for employers of works in the healthcare industry, emergency response organizations and correction institutions, employers will not be require made a determination if a COVID-19 case is work related except where:
“1) There is objective evidence that a COVID-19 case may be work-related. This could include, for example, a number of cases developing among workers who work closely together without an alternative explanation; and
2) The evidence was reasonably available to the employer. For purposes of this memorandum, examples of reasonably available evidence include information given to the employer by employees, as well as information that an employer learns regarding its employees’ health and safety in the ordinary course of managing its business and employees.”
OSHA has said that its this policy “will help employers focus their response efforts on implementing good hygiene practices in their workplaces, and otherwise mitigating COVID-19’s effects, rather than on making difficult work-relatedness decisions in circumstances where there is community transmission.”
If you have questions about the above information, please give Senior Counsel Attorney, Eric Tiritilli a call at 402-397-7300.