Can OSHA cite my office for an alleged ergonomic hazard?
Yes. Under the General Duty Clause, OSHA will issue a citation if an ergonomic hazard exists, is recognized, and is causing, or is likely to cause physical harm to an employee. Applying ergonomic principles in the workplace can substantially reduce the number of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). Examples of MSDs include: carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, rotator cuff injuries, trigger finger, muscle strains, lower back injuries, and epicondylitis. Employers should make a good faith effort to reduce the chances of such injuries with the implementation of ergonomic programs. More information can be found at https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/ergonomics/identifyprobs.html.
A school has requested immunization records for one of our patients of record. How should we respond?
It is important to be familiar with the laws within your state. If your state has “school entry” laws which prohibit a child from attending unless the school has proof of immunizations, then the health care provider is permitted to disclose proof of immunization directly to the school to comply with state law. In states that allow, but do not require the release of immunization records, the covered entity must seek permission prior to the release of the records. Because of revisions with the Omnibus Rules, covered entities have some flexibility. The rule does not dictate the nature of the documentation or require a parent’s signature. The agreement may be oral or over the phone, from a parent, guardian, or other person acting in loco parentis for the individual. The provider may also disclose the record if the prospective student is an adult or emancipated minor. See 45 CFR 164.512(b)(1)(vi).