On June 10, 2021, OSHA (the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration) released the COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). This establishes new mandatory requirements, applicable to the healthcare industry. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, presents “a grave danger” to workers in healthcare settings according to OSHA. Since people with COVID-19 are reasonably expected to present themselves in this setting, the ETS was issued to address this hazard. The full text of the ETS can be found at www.osha.gov/coronavirus/ets. Refer to 29 CFR 1910.502.
This rule applies to all settings where healthcare services or healthcare support services are provided and where suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients are treated. This includes employees in hospitals, emergency responders, nursing homes and assisted living facilities, home healthcare workers, and in ambulatory care facilities. There are however certain enumerated exceptions. The ETS does not apply to the following healthcare settings:
According to OSHA, “For healthcare settings embedded in nonhealthcare settings, the ETS applies only to the embedded healthcare setting and not to the remainder of the physical location. Where emergency responders or other licensed healthcare providers enter a non-healthcare setting to provide healthcare services, the ETS applies only to the provision of healthcare services by that employee. The ETS exempts fully vaccinated workers from masking, distancing, and barrier requirements when in well-defined areas where there is no reasonable expectation that any person with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 will be present.”
If your setting is covered under the ETS, the following is a brief listing of the key requirements. Consult the standard for full details.
MedSafe will provide additional updates as appropriate.
For further information or assistance on these requirements, please contact your MedSafe Team.
Toll-free: (888) MED-SAFE