By Eric J. Conn, Head of Epstein Becker & Green’s OSHA Practice Group
OSHA recently announced a campaign to raise awareness about the hazards likely to cause musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) among health care workers responsible for patient care. Common MSDs suffered in the patient care industry include sprains, strains, soft tissue and back injuries. These injuries are due in large part to over exertion related to manual patient handling activities, often involving heavy lifting associated with transferring and repositioning patients and working in awkward positions.
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“The best control for MSDs is an effective prevention program,” said MaryAnn Garrahan, OSHA’s Regional
By Frank C. Morris, Jr. and Jordan B. Schwartz
An employer’s wellness program—despite certain “penalty” provisions—was recently held not to be discriminatory under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in Seff v. Broward County. The Eleventh Circuit found the wellness program, sponsored by Broward County, Florida (“County”), was established as a term of the County’s insured group health plan and, as such, fell under the ADA’s bona fide benefit plan “safe harbor” provision. This ruling is welcome news for employers with or considering wellness programs.
However, if the County’s … Continue Reading
By Eric J. Conn
In August of 2010, a Delta Air Lines (“Delta”) baggage handler was fatally injured in a workplace accident, when the employee was ejected from a baggage tug vehicle while not wearing a seat belt. As a result of this incident, Delta was cited by OSHA in February 2011 for alleged violations of regulations under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, including specifically, 1910.132—relating to personal protective equipment.
To resolve the citations, Delta entered into a settlement agreement with OSHA on April 17, 2012 that required Delta to pay a modest penalty, $8,500, but also … Continue Reading