Labs in Court

OSHA Fines New Jersey Hospital for Coronavirus Respiratory Protection Violations

Case: OSHA is proposing to fine the hospital $9,639 for two serious violations: i. Failure to fit test tight-fitting respirators face piece respirators on employees required to use them; and ii. Not training employees on proper respirator use and ensuring employees understood when they must wear a respirator.

Significance: Although the total penalty amount is fairly minor by OSHA standards, the thing lab managers should take away from this case is that OSHA inspectors are out in the field doing targeted inspections to determine if health care facilities are complying with their COVID-19-related responsibilities. Thus, a week after the New Jersey case, OSHA fined a Massachusetts dental practice $9,500 for lack of fit-testing and five other serious violations of respiratory protection, bloodborne pathogen and hazcom requirements.