OSHA Releases New Guidance for Employers
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently released new guidance for employers titled “Protecting Workers: Guidance on Mitigating and Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace.”
The guidance is intended to inform employers and workers in most workplace settings outside of healthcare to help them identify risks of being exposed to and/or contracting COVID-19 at work, and to help them determine appropriate control measures to implement. It encourages employers to implement “COVID-19 Prevention Programs,” and provides guidance on the use of personal protective equipment, ventilation, and cleaning, among other matters. While the guidance creates no new legal obligations, it does contain advisory recommendations and descriptions of existing mandatory OSHA safety and health standards.
The guidance notes that separate OSHA guidance is applicable to healthcare and emergency response settings, and also contains links to additional CDC guidance applicable to those settings. OSHA also has additional industry-specific guidance. Employers should review the applicable OSHA guidance and stay tuned for any updates.