OSHA Recordable Injuries & Illnesses

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Employers should record injuries that require medical treatment beyond first aid.
Employers should record injuries that require medical treatment beyond first aid. (Image: Hospital image by Raulmahón from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>)

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, known as OSHA, protects the safety of workers by collecting information about work-related injuries and illnesses. OSHA-recordable injuries and illnesses include a wide range of work-related problems, which employers are required to report on the OSHA form called 300 log. The basic criteria for OSHA recordable injuries and illnesses include death, medical treatment beyond first aid, days of missed work, restricted work ability, transfer to a different job, and any incident that causes loss of consciousness. Therefore, a very large range of illnesses and injuries are recordable as long as they are work-related and serious enough to meet the basic OSHA criteria.

Physician-Diagnosed Illness or Injury

If a physician recommends treatment for an injury or illness to an employee, then the employer should record it. The employer must report the injury or illness on the 300 log form even if the employee does not follow doctor's orders and get treatment, according to OSHA guidelines.

Hearing Loss

The OSHA requires employers to report work-related hearing loss as an injury on the 300 log form. Hearing loss, as defined by OSHA guidelines, includes any change in hearing threshold of 10 decibels or greater in one or both ears at frequencies of 2,000, 3,000 and 4,000 hertz.

Tuberculosis

The OSHA counts work-related tuberculosis as a recordable illness. If an employee gets a physician-diagnosed case of tuberculosis after being exposed to tuberculosis at work, the employer must report the tuberculosis to the OSHA as a "respiratory condition" on the 300 log. If the worker lives with someone who has tuberculosis, had contact with somebody with active tuberculosis outside of work that the Public Health Department can verify or an investigation can prove that the employee caught the tuberculosis outside of work, the employer does not have to report it.

Contaminated Needles and Sharps Exposure

If an employee gets cut or pricked at work by a sharp object carrying blood or other potentially hazardous material, the employer must record and report the injury, as mandated by OSHA regulations. Since bodily fluids can contain dangerous diseases and infect other people, the OSHA takes exposure to them very seriously.

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