OSHA issued new guidance (on January 29, 2021) for protecting workers from being exposed to and/or contracting COVID-19 at work. In this guidance, OSHA reinforces the importance of face coverings and physical distancing, and places a strong emphasis on developing a COVID-19 Prevention Plan.
The guidance also provides additional details on what OSHA considers key measures for limiting the spread of COVID-19:
- Separating and sending home infected or potentially infected employees
- Physical distancing, or barriers when physical distancing isn’t possible
- Face coverings and PPE
- Improving ventilation
- Providing hygiene supplies (hand sanitizer, handwashing stations, etc.)
- Routine cleaning and disinfection
OSHA indicated that they will continue to update this guidance as new developments emerge.
Additionally, OSHA recognizes that employees may already be receiving COVID-19 vaccines and reminds employers to continue to enforce masking and social distancing rules for all employees, regardless of vaccination status.
Need Help with a COVID-19 Prevention Plans?
OSHA released a guidance document, not a regulation that’s enforceable by law. Under President Biden’s executive order on January 21, OSHA has until March 15 to issue an Emergency Temporary Standard on COVID-19.