Medical Facilities Cited For Exposing Workers To COVID-19
The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited the owner-operator of four Rhode Island medical facilities for allegedly continuing to interact with workers even though he exhibited signs of being positive with COVID-19.
According to OSHA, the owner, who later tested positive for COVID-19, also failed to implement proper safety measures after six employers tested positive for the virus in the fall of 2020.
OSHA investigators found the owner of North Providence Urgent Care Inc., North Providence Primary Care Associates Inc., Center of New England Urgent Care Inc. and Center of New England Primary Care Inc. willfully exposed employees to the coronavirus. As
The owner and his companies face a proposed fine of $136,532 for failing to:
- Implement engineering controls, such as portable high-efficiency particulate air fan/filtration systems, and barriers between adjacent desks;
- Implement administrative controls, such as cleaning and disinfecting, and symptom screening of all employees;
- Mandate contact tracing or quarantine periods after employee exposure to coronavirus-exposed patients.
“This employer placed workers and others at risk of contracting the coronavirus. Employers have a responsibility to isolate workers and themselves if they show symptoms of the virus,” said OSHA Area Director Robert Sestito in Providence, Rhode Island. “Protecting employees and patients by implementing timely and effective safeguards and controls to minimize exposure is critical to mitigating the spread of the virus.”
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