Q: I’m taking over OSHA compliance for our medical practice and the previous safety officer is telling everyone that OSHA will never inspect us because of our small size. I don’t believe this is true but I need proof. Can you help?
A: Here is a chart of OSHA inspections on practices for FY 2008. As you can see small practices comprised the greatest percentage of practices inspected.
It is true that medical practices with fewer than 11 employees are not on OSHA’s planned inspection radar screen. That’s were the misconception comes in, because planned inspections are not the only reason for an OSHA visit. Unplanned inspections such as referrals and employee complaints will get OSHA’s attention as will the number of regional special emphasis programs for bloodborne pathogens.
See the post on the September issue of Medical Environment Update  for common and expensive OSHA fines on physician and dental practices last year.
That should help set the record straight with your co-workers.
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