Workplace safety guidelines from federal, state and local authorities are rapidly changing in response to the highly transmittable COVID-19 Delta variant, and employers should update their policies accordingly.
On June 10, 2021, the first nationwide emergency workplace safety rule, requiring health-care employers to protect workers from occupational exposure to COVID-19 has been published on OSHA’s website. The Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) released on June 10, 2021, only applies to the health-care sector and will be supplemented by voluntary guidance for other industries.
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) has continued its crackdown on DSO non-compliance. DSOs should be wary of continued scrutiny regarding DSO structures along with the heightened suspicion of fraud and abuse in the dental industry. Recently, Congress has expressed concerns regarding DSOs, which includes calling on HHS to exclude from Medicaid participation any corporate-owned dental clinics using “deceptive practices” that result in unnecessary or substandard care.
As COVID-19 vaccines become readily available, many employers are still wondering if they can require employees to get vaccinated, and what they can do if an employee refuses to get vaccinated.
As the on-set of COVID-19 continues, as an employer, how are you going to handle your internal procedures if you learn that an employee has tested positive for COVID-19. Employers should act immediately to ensure the safety of the employee’s co-workers and comply with all applicable laws.