OSHA COVID-19 Healthcare Emergency Temporary Standard Comments Reopened Through May 23rd

Mary Madison, RN, RAC-CT, CDP
Clinical Consultant – Briggs Healthcare

On June 21, 2021, OSHA published an interim final rule establishing an emergency temporary standard (ETS) to protect healthcare and healthcare support service workers from occupational exposure to COVID-19 in settings where people with COVID-19 are reasonably expected to be present (86 FR 32376). The ETS took effect immediately but also served as a proposed rule on which OSHA requested comment. OSHA received comments concerning the ETS during the comment period, which was to end on July 21, 2021, but was extended to August 20, 2021, in response to requests from the public (86 FR 38232). In accordance with 29 USC 655(c)(3), the agency is now preparing to promulgate a final standard.

On March 22, 2022, OSHA announced a limited reopening of the record, permitting the submission of additional comments from stakeholders to the rulemaking docket (OSHA-2020-0004) until April 22, 2022. Stakeholders were also invited to submit a notice of intention to appear (NOITA) to testify during the informal public hearing. The deadline for submitting NOITAs was April 6, 2022, and the hearing took place Wednesday, April 27, 2022, through Monday, May 2, 2022.  



  • At the conclusion of the informal public hearing on May 2, 2022, OSHA reopened the docket to allow for submission of post-hearing comments and briefs. In accordance with the hearing procedures (see OSHA-2020-0004-1973), any stakeholder (i.e., regardless of whether or not the stakeholder filed a Notice of Intention to Appear) may submit additional information and data relevant to the proceeding, as well as final written briefs, from May 2, 2022, through May 23, 2022 (i.e., within 21 days of the close of the hearing). After this date no further submissions will be accepted from the public. Comments and associated documents for this rulemaking (Docket Number OSHA-2020-0004) should be submitted electronically at https://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal.