Working in healthcare, a range of illnesses and injuries walk through your medical practice doors. Serious and emergent situations may arise, depending on your specialty, and protocols are in place to refer to local emergency facilities. When it comes to your staff's safety, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires all employers to prepare and maintain records that document serious occupational injuries and illnesses using the OSHA 300 Log.
Documenting incidents is important for employers and workers. OSHA uses the information to evaluate the safety of a workplace, understand industry hazards, and implement worker protections to reduce and eliminate hazards. Here are some fundamentals every practice manager should know when it comes to OSHA recordkeeping and reporting.
What events am I required to report directly to OSHA?
Under the OSHA Recordkeeping regulation (29 CFR 1904), covered employers must report serious events such as:
- All work-related fatalities within 8 hours.
- All work-related inpatient hospitalizations, all amputations, and all losses of an eye within 24 hours.
You can report to OSHA by:
- Calling OSHA's free and confidential number at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742).
- Calling the closest Area Office during normal business hours.
- Using the new online form.
Fatalities that occur within 30 days of the work-related incident must be reported to OSHA. In-patient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye must be reported to OSHA only if they occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident.
Am I required to prepare and maintain records?
Employers with more than ten employees and whose establishments are not classified as a partially exempt industry must record work-related injuries and illnesses using OSHA Forms 300, 300A and 301.
Employers who are required to keep Form 300, the Injury and Illness log, must post Form 300A, the Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, in a workplace every year from February 1 to April 30. Current and former employees, or their representatives, have the right to access injury and illness records. Employers must give the requester a copy of the relevant record(s) by the end of the next business day.
Who is exempt from keeping records?
OSHA regulations require certain employers to routinely keep records of serious employee injuries and illnesses. However, there are two classes of employers that are partially exempt from routinely keeping records. First, employers with ten or fewer employees at all times during the previous calendar year are exempt from routinely keeping OSHA injury and illness records. OSHA's revised recordkeeping regulation maintains this exemption. Second, establishments in certain low-hazard industries are also exempt from routinely keeping OSHA injury and illness records. When in doubt, always refer to your practice compliance documentation and the OSHA website.
Does OSHA provide training for the general public on recordkeeping requirements?
Yes. Through its national network of OSHA Training Institute (OTI) Education Centers, OSHA offers the OSHA #7845 Recordkeeping Rule Seminar course. This half-day course covers the OSHA requirements for maintaining and posting records of occupational injuries and illnesses and reporting specific cases to OSHA. Included in the course are hands-on activities associated with completing the OSHA Form 300 Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, OSHA Form 300A Summary of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, and the OSHA Form 301 Injury and Illness Incident Report.
To search for specific course locations and dates, please visit the OTI Education Centers' searchable schedule.
PMI recently released OSHA and Workplace Safety during COVID.
Stay Updated on OSHA Requirements With PMI
PMI's Certified Medical Office Manager (CMOM) course has a dedicated module on compliance requirements including OSHA and HIPAA guidelines. It also covers important steps to prevent identity theft, fraud, and abuse.
Running a practice includes staying up-to-date on these important measures, and more! Cover all your bases when you complete the CMOM curriculum and certification exam.