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Reporting COVID-19 Fatalities and In-Patient Hospitalizations to OSHA

Emergency Temporary Standard

OSHA’s COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) requires employers to report all work-related COVID-19 fatalities and in-patient hospitalizations to OSHA. This document explains the reporting requirements.

The ETS requires employers to report each work-related COVID-19 fatality or in-patient hospitalization of any employee, regardless of the amount of time between the exposure to COVID-19 in the work environment and the death or in-patient hospitalization. Employers must report each employee COVID-19 fatality to OSHA within 8 hours of learning about the fatality. Employers must also report each employee COVID-19 in-patient hospitalization to OSHA within 24 hours of learning about the in-patient hospitalization. These requirements are similar to the OSHA requirements for reporting fatalities and hospitalizations under 29 CFR 1904.39. The only difference is that under the ETS, employers are required to report a COVID-19 in-patient hospitalization or fatality that occurs at any time after a work-related incident (i.e., exposure). Under 1904.39, employers are only required to report fatalities that occur within 30 days of the work related incident and in-patient hospitalizations that occur within 24 hours of the work-related incident (see 1904.39(b)(6)). Those limits do not apply to the ETS’s reporting requirements. The ETS’s reporting requirements apply to all employers covered by the COVID-19 ETS. Where an employer is required to report a fatality or in-patient hospitalization under both 1904.39 and the ETS, a single report will fulfill both requirements.

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