Recently OSHA posted revised enforcement for recording cases of COVID-19. Effective May 26, 2020, this time-limited guidance will be in place for the current COVID-19 public health crisis. Under OSHA’s recordkeeping requirements, COVID-19 is a recordable illness. Employers are responsible for recording cases of COVID-19 if the case:
- Is confirmed as defined by the CDC;
- Is work-related; and
- Involves one or more of the general recording criteria, such as medical treatment beyond first aid or days away from work.
Given the nature of the disease and ubiquity of community spread, however, in many cases it remains difficult to determine whether a COVID-19 illness is work-related, especially when an employee has experienced potential exposure both in and out of the workplace. Because of the difficulty determining work-relatedness, OSHA is exercising enforcement discretion to assess employers’ efforts in making work-related determinations.