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OSHA is helping to separate facts from rumors about workers wearing cloth masks or other face coverings during the coronavirus pandemic.

The agency addresses this question in its coronavirus FAQ: Does wearing a medical/surgical mask or cloth face covering cause unsafe oxygen levels or harmful carbon dioxide levels to the wearer?

No, says OSHA.

Medical masks, including surgical masks, are routinely worn by healthcare workers throughout the day as part of their PPE and do not compromise their oxygen levels or cause carbon dioxide buildup.

They are designed to be breathed through and can protect against respiratory droplets, which are typically much larger than tiny carbon dioxide particles.




Consequently, most carbon dioxide particles will either go through the mask or escape along the mask’s loose-fitting perimeter. Some carbon dioxide might collect between the mask and the wearer’s face, but not at unsafe levels.

Like medical masks, cloth face coverings are loose-fitting with no seal and are designed to be breathed through.

In addition, workers may easily remove their medical masks or cloth face coverings periodically (and when not in close proximity with others) to eliminate any negligible build-up of carbon dioxide that might occur.

Cloth face coverings and medical masks can help prevent the spread of potentially infectious respiratory droplets from the wearer to their co-workers, including when the wearer has COVID-19 and does not know it.

OSHA standard does not apply


Some people have mistakenly claimed that OSHA standards (e.g., the Respiratory Protection standard, 29 CFR 1910.134; the Permit-Required Confined Space standard 29 CFR 1910.146; and the Air Contaminants standard, 29 CFR 1910.1000) apply to the issue of oxygen or carbon dioxide levels resulting from the use of medical masks or cloth face coverings in work settings with normal ambient air (e.g. healthcare settings, offices, retail settings, construction).

These standards do not apply to the wearing of medical masks or cloth face coverings in work settings with normal ambient air. These standards would only apply to work settings where there are known or suspected sources of chemicals (e.g., manufacturing facilities) or workers are required to enter a potentially dangerous location (e.g., a large tank or vessel).


SOURCE:

https://www.safetynewsalert.com/articles/osha-cloth-masks-co2/
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As construction professionals, it feels like we’re always thinking about safety — and yet, our industry is still one of the most high-risk. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), one in five worker deaths occurs in construction, accounting for nearly a quarter of all worker fatalities in the United States.The administration reports that over half of all these fatalities are caused by the “fatal four” incidents — falls, struck by objects, electrocutions, and caught-in/between hazards.

However, investing in the right safety procedures, training, workwear, and supplies can drastically reduce the likelihood of a severe accident or fatality happening on your job site. Preventing injuries is key to solidifying an influential safety culture, keeping your workers safe, and safeguarding your company at the same time. Here are signs your construction company needs to rethink its safety culture:




1. You’re Not Inspecting Job Sites Daily – Doing multiple thorough inspections of your site daily is crucial to ensuring that your workers and clients are not put at risk. Since they’re usually required under the contract with your client, inspections are important to help you keep your business strong. Some critical safety inspection tasks to complete daily include:

a. Hazard identification to ensure that your workers are not exposed to any apparent hazards, including chemicals and struck-by hazards
b. Equipment inspection to ensure that all tools and excavation equipment work well, are correctly positioned and are run by competent employees
c. Process inspection to ensure that the materials and equipment used are appropriate for the scope and plan on the project
d. Standards inspection to ensure that all installations are installed according to specific standards and local building codes
e. Thorough cleaning and disinfecting among shared equipment
f. Detailed reporting of all inspections throughout the day

2. Employees Are Getting Sick and Hurt – Simply taking a look at the safety data from the last several months can tell you whether or not you need to make a drastic change in terms of safety protocols. Not even a single serious accident is acceptable, so your data should provide some insight into where and what you need to change. If employees are regularly getting hurt, rethink hazards, equipment, and processes. If they’re routinely facing illnesses, consider rethinking your paid sick leave policies and working on improving cleanliness.

3. Employees Aren’t Wearing the Right Gear – There is no scenario where your workers should be forced to go into a dangerous situation without the right gear. Always outfit your team with work safety gear selected for the specific jobs at hand, following all guidelines by OSHA and your state and local codes. We always recommend choosing ANSI/ISEA high visibility gear and providing workers with new, properly fitting personal protective equipment (PPE) for the face, eyes, and ears.

4. You Don’t Have the Proper Emergency Supplies – Even though we have some of the most durable, protective safety apparel out of almost any industry, construction site injuries and emergencies do happen. You always want to be prepared to address any injury on the job, whether it is something as small as a splinter or callous or something as serious as a life-threatening collision. Always follow OSHA’s guidelines for first aid, making sure you always have a first aid kit, fire extinguishers, and staff members trained in CPR and first aid.

5. Employees Are Afraid to Report Risks – This is undoubtedly one of the biggest issues when it comes to construction safety. Having a poor safety culture is one where workers might feel shamed or disparaged for bringing up potential risks. And yet, it’s the workers themselves—those who spend a ton of time on the job site—who are the best-equipped to point out and discover job site risks. Creating a secure, anonymous system of reporting can help curb this issue.

6. You’re Not Providing Site-Specific Training – Among the more preventable injuries and incidents that compromise job site safety are the ones that occur because crew members—including supervisors, workers, and contractors—don’t know the site. The construction company's role is to do a thorough hazard and site analysis before breaking ground. Developing some site-specific training and protocols can help prevent slips, falls, and struck-by hazards each day.

7. You’re Not Performing Near-Miss and Incident Investigations – A “near-miss” occurs when an event doesn’t cause harm but has real potential to lead to injury or accidents in the future. By paying attention to what could have happened, you’re able to safeguard against very serious incidents in the future. In work environments where safety culture isn’t cultivated, near-misses and incidents go unreported and workers may even be discouraged from reporting them. This mindset can be extremely dangerous for your team.

8. You’re Not Conducting Toolbox Talks – Toolbox talks are group discussions that informally cover specific safety issues. It sounds like a simple enough thing to implement, and it’s actually way more effective than you might imagine. In fact, construction professionals report that toolbox talks are the number one most effective way to communicate safety messages. They are even considered more effective than training sessions. These talks allow leaders to address important safety protocols while also opening up the floor to worker concerns.

Keep an Open Dialogue


Often, the signs of an impending accident are clear among workers. Owners and safety managers need to talk to their team and keep an open dialogue to share vital information. Poor safety culture and improper procedures can leave your team members in danger and your company at risk of liability.


SOURCE:

https://www.ishn.com/articles/112626-signs-your-construction-company-needs-to-improve-its-safety-culture/
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On August 6, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) released updated guidance for healthcare employers facing severe shortages of respirators during the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The supply chain for respirators has improved but is not yet fully restored, according to Cal/OSHA.

Healthcare facilities in California must comply with the state’s Aerosol Transmissible Diseases (ATD) Standard, which has no federal equivalent. COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. COVID-19 currently is widespread in most U.S. communities and considered a workplace hazard.

“Respirators must always be immediately available to health care workers who may be called upon to perform emergency aerosol generating procedures on suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients,” stated a boxed warning in the guidance. A surgical mask may not be used in situations when a respirator is required.




The guidance includes recommended engineering controls and work practices to help minimize the need for respiratory protection and strategies for extended respirator use and optimizing supplies.

Engineering and work practice controls include:

• Minimizing the number of employees exposed to suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients and infectious aerosols by using barrier enclosures that cover a patient’s head and upper body;
• Masking suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients as a source control method whenever employees are not using a respirator;
• Training employees on additional precautions and changes to the ATD plan when respirators cannot be obtained or when there are changes to procedures such as respirator reuse or extended use; and
• Informing employees and their representatives that the changes are only in effect until respirator supplies can be restored, keeping them updated on status changes.

Employers must provide and ensure that all employees exposed to aerosol-generating procedures use powered air-purifying respirators (PAPRs) or another respirator that provides equivalent or greater protection. If PAPRs are unavailable and cannot be obtained, an N95 respirator is the minimum protection that should be used. More protective respirators like elastomeric half-mask or full-face respirators, which are more likely to seal well to the face and achieve a better fit factor, should be used if available.

Methods that may be used to extend supplies of N95 respirators include the following:

• Using reusable National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)-certified respirators—elastomeric half-mask, full-facepiece respirators and PAPRs equipped with particulate filters that can be disinfected and reused multiple times—instead of disposable filtering facepiece respirators;
• Using industrial, NIOSH-certified filtering facepiece respirators recognized under the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization issued on March 2;
• Allowing employees to wear their own respirators if they comply with Cal/OSHA requirements;
• Using fit-testing methods that maximize respirator supplies and fit-testing efficiency like qualitative fit testing, which does not damage the respirator so the respirator used during the test can be used on the job by the employee who was tested;
• Using certain expired NIOSH-certified filtering facepiece respirators that NIOSH has approved for use under specific conditions; and
• Extended respirator use—for a maximum of 8 to 12 hours—and storing disinfected filtering facepiece respirators for future shortages.

The ATD Standard also applies to correctional facilities, diagnostic laboratories, and police and public health services; the agency only issued guidance on August 6 for healthcare facilities.


SOURCE:

https://safety.blr.com/workplace-safety-news/employee-safety/respiratory-protection/CalOSHA-issues-updated-ATD-respirator-guidance//
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As the novel coronavirus began to shut down the global economy, an EHS Today survey shows safety leaders were ready to battle the virus in the workplace.

It takes a leader to handle unprecedented challenges within the workplace, and the COVID-19 pandemic has shown the essential role of the safety leader. No longer are these professionals viewed as “cops,” but they now are looked at as arbiters of critical decisions that will keep businesses moving forward and employees safe as economic conditions fluctuate.

Just over 700 safety professionals recently participated in an EHS Today editorial survey in which they provided insight into how companies are managing the evolving business environment and what they think workplace safety will look like in the future.

While the majority of respondents represented the manufacturing (33.5%) industry, construction (11.4%), government (7.6%), and oil and gas (5.8%) were among the other industries represented.

The majority, 88.9% of those who took the survey, felt that their organization has been effectively supporting and communicating policies throughout the pandemic.

“Our president sent out weekly email updates, even if it was to just comfort employees and reinforce that their health comes first and we’re all in this together,” one respondent wrote. “The company took early measures and have put in place procedures that will protect our facilities as changes in the pandemic occur.”




Still, some safety professionals felt like executive leadership could have been more proactive in such a visible role and to act as a role model.

“There are measures in place,” one safety professional said. “In general, the measures are followed. However, senior management fails to lead by example as face masks are not worn.”

Whether or not the C-suite has been supporting efforts, safety professionals still need to step up as leaders in during this unprecedented time and practice emergency preparedness. More than half (58.7%) of respondents indicated that their EHS management program included policies and controls for infectious diseases/illness prevention prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.

As the pandemic reared its ugly head, respondents faced continuing challenges to their efforts, the biggest ones being cross functional management (22.5%), time (19%), and staggered phases (15.2%). Nearly 20% (19.66%) specified other obstacles, such as lack of adherence to new measures.

“There is a lot of pushback from employees. Some are scared to death others are not,” one safety professional explained. “Some employees have never stopped working or changed their job in any way. For example, a water utility worker cannot work from home. They feel this all crazy. The office worker likes working from home and doesn’t want to come to work. Because all they hear is how bad it is. If we can’t get back to work the economy is going to tank.”

Return-to-work efforts pose a test in business continuity efforts, with 44.7% of respondents saying it will take 1-3 months to get their entire workforce back to their facilities, 30% saying it will take 3-6 months and 8.3% saying it will take a year.

New procedures also have caused safety professionals to see an increase in expenditures, with 44.7% saying their budgets have increased in response to pandemic protocols.

Because of the uncertain public health environment, future operations will change to ensure workplace safety. Professionals gave a glimpse into the “new norm,” saying flexible work policies including work from home (50.6%), an increased emphasis on industrial hygiene and occupational health (49.8%), additional policies and controls (43%), and increased technology investment (18.9%) will support business continuity in the future.

One respondent concludes, “This pandemic should be a huge eye opener for everyone around the globe. I strongly believe that this will be the way of life going forward.”


SOURCE:

https://www.ehstoday.com/safety/article/21138741/ehs-today-exclusive-safety-managers-show-preparedness-for-ongoing-pandemic/
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OSHA generally recommends that workers wear medical masks or cloth face coverings at work to protect against the coronavirus. OSHA’s recently published page addresses false claims that these coverings cause unsafe oxygen and carbon dioxide levels for the wearer.

By now, we all know that cloth face coverings and masks greatly reduce the risk of transmitting and contracting the coronavirus (assuming both parties are wearing a mask). While scientists are still studying the virus to its full extent, there have been a number of controlled tests done that prove the efficiency of the mask to protect people.

OSHA highly recommends that people wear masks—especially in the workplace when you are working in the same area as others. However, there have been many misconceptions regarding masks and the science behind them that have caused many people to not wear masks, or do so with worry for their health.




To address those misconceptions, OSHA recently issued frequently asked questions (FAQ) guidance to address inaccurate claims that these masks and face coverings cause unsafe oxygen or harmful carbon dioxide levels for the wearer.

For example, OSHA addressed the question Does wearing a medical/surgical mask or cloth face covering cause unsafe oxygen levels or harmful carbon dioxide levels to the wearer? OSHA answer, which is supported by other scientific bodies, is:

“No. Medical masks, including surgical masks, are routinely worn by healthcare workers throughout the day as part of their personal protective equipment (PPE) ensembles and do not compromise their oxygen levels or cause carbon dioxide buildup. They are designed to be breathed through and can protect against respiratory droplets, which are typically much larger than tiny carbon dioxide particles…”

OSHA addresses a number of other common questions about the safety and purpose of masks.


SOURCE:

https://ohsonline.com/articles/2020/08/05/working-from-the-office-again-heres-how-to-manage-that-uneasiness.aspx?admgarea=news/
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Some office workspaces have returned to in-person work again, and that is leaving a number of workers anxious, stressed and ashamed of their sanitation efforts—or lack thereof. Here’s how to manage that anxiety, and how to talk to your employer.

Believe it or not, we are still in the middle of a pandemic. With cases rising, no vaccine and the high health stakes, in the face of a disaster like this, even elaborate and extensive safety and health protective measures can feel insufficient. In an office with minimal ventilation, shared surfaces and close quarters, masks and hand sanitizer might not be enough.




What should you do if you are working from the office again and feel uneasy about it? What if other workers are not fully covering their face, or wearing a mask in shared areas? What if your employer is asking you to come in, and giving you no option of working from home? What if you are a new employee and feel uneasy about asking for accommodations? One Atlantic article has some tips for you.

Alison Green, the HR expert who gives advice at Ask a Manager, recently shared her tips for workers being asked to return to the office unnecessarily. You can:

■ Point out that your competitors are not being asked to return to the office
■ Ask your bosses about how they are planning for people who must take public transportation
■ Ask how they are complying with every CDC recommendation listed here
■ If you are high risk of serious complications from COVID-19, you can request remote work as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (but keep in mind that not every situation is covered by the ADA).

For some workers, going to work and braving the risks seems like their only option. Many would lose much needed salaries and health insurance if they do not come into work and lose their jobs.

But for others, the job is not work the risk. Some workers, who can afford the choice, feel they would rather lose their job and struggle with unemployment than go into work and risk getting sick.

It is important to remember that as a worker, your safety and health matters. Luckily, there are ways to approach these conversations with your employers and come to a collaborative decision.



SOURCE:

https://ohsonline.com/articles/2020/08/05/working-from-the-office-again-heres-how-to-manage-that-uneasiness.aspx?admgarea=news/
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On July 21, 2020, OSHA announced that two Ohio nursing facilities would receive citations for failing to protect their employees against coronavirus. The healthcare company OHNH EMP LLC received a violation for failing to provide respiratory protection standards for their employees after seven employees reported coronavirus-related hospitalizations.

OSHA inspected three OHNH EMP facilities in Ohio: Pebble Creek Healthcare Center in Akron, Salem West Healthcare Center and Salem North Healthcare Center in Salem. OSHA cited each location for a serious violation of two respiratory protection standards: failing to develop a comprehensive written respiratory protection program and failing to provide medical evaluations to determine employees’ ability to use a respirator in the workplace.




OSHA also issued a Hazard Alert Letter regarding the company’s practice of allowing N95 respirator use for up to seven days and not conducting initial fit testing. The agency has proposed $40,482.

“It is critically important that employers take action to protect their employees during the pandemic, including by implementing effective respiratory protection programs,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Loren Sweatt. “OSHA has and will continue to vigorously enforce the respiratory protection standard and all standards that apply to the coronavirus. As Secretary Scalia has said, ‘the cop is on the beat.’”

The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA's area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

SOURCE:

https://ohsonline.com/articles/2020/07/23/osha-cites-ohio-nursing-facilities-for-failing-to-fully-implement-respiratory-programs-to-protect.aspx?admgarea=news/
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London — Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, 1 out of 14 workers say they’d go to work even if they feel sick and regardless of how severe their symptoms are, results of a recent survey show.

Commissioned by Thermalcheck, a manufacturer of no-contact temperature check stations, marketing research company OnePoll surveyed 2,000 U.S. workers to learn how they’d handle their health when returning to the workplace during and after the pandemic. Nearly half said they feel pressure from their boss to go to work when sick. Feeling guilty was the leading motivator to work while sick.




Other findings:

● 33% of the respondents said they’d keep working with cold or flu symptoms because they’d miss their colleagues, along with office banter and gossip.
● More than one-third said they don’t usually consider their co-workers’ health when deciding to go to work when feeling ill.
● A stomachache wouldn’t stop 52% of the respondents from reporting to work, while 40% said the same about a bad cough. Thirty-three percent said chest tightness wouldn’t keep them home.
● 40% believe they’ve passed an illness to a co-worker as a consequence of trying to be viewed as a hard worker.

“Despite the pandemic and the advice to avoid others if you feel unwell, there are still a large number of workers who will feel they need to go into the workplace,” a Thermalcheck spokesman said in a statement. “This approach to working while unwell needs to change and employers need to ensure the safety of their workforce.”

SOURCE:

https://www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/20136-covid-19-pandemic-wont-stop-some-people-from-going-to-work-sick-survey-shows
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In a break with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Virginia became the first state to adopt an emergency temporary standard (ETS) for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Virginia’s COVID-19 ETS applies to every employer in the state, unlike California’s Airborne Transmissible Disease (ATD) standard, which only applies to correctional facilities, funeral homes and mortuaries, hospitals and other healthcare facilities, and public services.

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. COVID-19 currently is widespread in most U.S. communities and considered a workplace hazard.

The ETS establishes requirements for employers to control, prevent, and mitigate the spread of SARS-CoV-2 among employees. The ETS takes effect as soon as it is published in a Richmond, Virginia, newspaper, with the exception of the standard’s training requirements, which take effect 60 days after the rule’s effective date. The ETS expires within 6 months, upon expiration of the governor’s state of emergency rule, or when it’s repealed by the Virginia Safety and Health Codes Board or superseded by a permanent standard.

Most employers in the state must develop infectious disease preparedness and response plans once the rule becomes effective.




The ETS contains provisions for exposure assessments and determinations, notification requirements, and employee access to exposure and medical records. Requirements for all employees and employers mirror some of the guidelines for businesses issued by OSHA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For example, common areas like break rooms and lunchrooms must be closed, or their access must be tightly controlled. Employers must ensure employees observe physical distancing protocols. Frequently touched surfaces must be cleaned and disinfected at least once at the end of each shift, using disinfecting chemicals and products listed in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) List N for use against SARS-CoV-2. Employees should wear cloth face coverings in situations when physical distances of 6 feet cannot be maintained.

The ETS contains more stringent requirements of “very high,” “high,” or “medium” exposure risks. “Very high” exposure risk means potential exposure to known or suspected sources of the SARS-CoV-2 virus during aerosol-generating procedures like patient intubation, collecting or handling laboratory samples, and performing autopsies. “High” exposure risk covers a full range of healthcare facilities and services, as well as emergency medical services and medical transport, and mortuaries.

“Medium” exposure risks cover most agriculture, construction, and general industry workplaces.

Those requirements include engineering controls like adequate ventilation in compliance with American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Standards and placing hospitalized patients with known or suspected cases of SARS-CoV-2 in an airborne infection isolation room.

Employers must install physical barriers like clear plastic sneeze guards to aid in mitigating the spread of SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 transmission. The standard also incorporates CDC Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) guidelines by reference.

Administrative and work practices controls include screening employees before each work shift for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

Employers must limit nonemployee access to their facilities and post signs requesting patients and family members to immediately report symptoms of respiratory illness on arrival at the healthcare facility and use disposable face coverings.

Employers must provide employees with job-specific education and training on preventing transmission of COVID-19, including initial and routine refresher training, as well as offer enhanced medical monitoring of employees during COVID-19 outbreaks.

In healthcare facilities, employers must provide alcohol-based hand sanitizers containing at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol.

To limit density in a facility, employers are expected to offer, if feasible, telework options and staggered work shifts. Employers should implement physical distances of at least 6 feet between employees and between employees and others at the worksite. Employers also must establish personal protective equipment (PPE) and respiratory protection programs that include medical evaluation, fit testing, and training.

Training under the ETS must cover requirements of the standard, signs and symptoms of COVID-19, infection control measures, and the employer’s preparedness and response plan.


SOURCE:

https://safety.blr.com/workplace-safety-news/employee-health/employee-health/Virginia-adopts-emergency-COVID-19-standard/
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For our returning US workforce, recognizing employees’ personal comfort on the job has never been more significant — especially for at-risk employees.

As the economy continues to reopen and companies across the country return to work during the ever-pressing COVID-19 pandemic, employers and employees alike are looking for more methods to deal with working in a “new normal.” For workers who require proper safety apparel — e.g. those in manufacturing, healthcare, food services, production, construction and machinery operation industries — this will include new ways to comfortably endure standing on one’s feet for long periods of time, while still practicing safe social distancing.




Health concerns


For employees who have returned or are soon returning to work, health concerns are especially high for those who fall into the older age brackets or are immunocompromised. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation analysis, about 41 million Americans ages 18 to 64 are at risk for serious complications from COVID-19 due to underlying conditions such as diabetes, uncontrolled asthma and heart disease. Also, on the high-risk list are Americans ages 65 and older – who currently represent the highest percentage of COVID-19 related deaths, and make up about 10.4 million people in the US workforce.

During the pandemic, the manufacturing and labour industry has unfortunately seen a growing number of COVID-19 cases erupting across various states, in particular outbreaks in facilities like meat packing plants and fulfillment centers. As businesses continue to reopen, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) still maintains strict guidelines for workers to “stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people” and wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) whenever possible, in order to limit the spread of COVID-19.

OSHA implores that businesses should “develop an infectious disease preparedness and response plan that can help guide protective actions against COVID-19,” and for industries that require close in-person work, to “move or reposition workstations to create more distance” and “rearrange seating in common break areas to maintain physical distance between workers.”

Workers’ comfort


Foot comfort and protection are always top of mind for the companies across the manufacturing, construction and warehousing-based industries. But as the workforce returns with CDC and OSHA safety guidelines in place, extra attention must be given to immunocompromised and senior employees, who may have a significant increased risk of contracting the virus on the job. Considering the millions of Americans who’ve been laid off or furloughed as a result of COVID-19, this also means that many vulnerable members of the aging population who’ve returned to work (or plan to do so soon) are doing so out of sheer monetary necessity.

Moreover, for this industry, the typical safety practices like standing on rubber floor mats that ease fatigue — which were previously standard practice across various facilities — are no longer relevant to immunocompromised employees who may fear standing too close to each other. An alternative solution is the shoe/boot insole.

Although far from new to the manufacturing industry, during the COVID-19 pandemic, the request for insoles as PPE has substantially increased by frontline healthcare and essential workers who are prone to standing for long periods of time. A properly cushioned heel and arch support insole should keep employees feeling comfortable all day, reduce pain, and overall offer more flexibility on and off site.

This type of foot comfort is imperative to keep the aging workforce moving. Without ergonomically efficient foot support, foot pain and fatigue can have lasting effects on the body and create harmful musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) — a disorder that older employees are at a particular high risk for. As feet hold humans’ entire bodyweight, damage done to the foot on the job can leave permanent lifelong impacts.

Aging workforce


As the economy reopens, finding the right foot-safety support for immunocompromised and senior employees is based on both lasting comfort, as well as their personal freedom to safely socially distance at work.

A recent study from SmartAsset showed that 45 percent of respondents ages 55-64 have had their retirement planning negatively impacted due to COVID-19. With no clear end date yet for the pandemic, many working Americans — who are working past age 65 at a larger rate than ever — have had to further push out their retirement plans in effort to make up lost finances from the pandemic. With a quickly aging workforce, it’s imperative that employers keep a close eye on the health and safety standards of their more vulnerable employees now more than ever, making sure that they have the tools to succeed comfortably on the job.

SOURCE:

https://www.ishn.com/articles/112616-a-step-up-returning-to-work-for-at-risk-employees/
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