With the continued impact of COVID-19 around the United States, it is important that dentists stay up to date on the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the American Dental Association (ADA). Here are some updates you should know about to keep your dental practice safe and in compliance with health recommendations, as of February 2022.

Vaccine Mandates

The Supreme Court overturned that part of the vaccine mandate which required businesses with 100+ staff members demand that employees get the COVID-19 vaccine. However, any place of business that is federally funded or that accepts Medicare or Medicaid still must abide by the mandate that employees get vaccinated. Learn more from the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force.

After Contracting COVID-19

Health care workers who test positive for COVID-19 and are asymptomatic can return to work after seven days with a negative test or after 10 days with no test. The day count starts when the employee first gets sick. Read more from the ADA.

After Exposure to COVID-19

Health care workers who have received the COVID-19 vaccine and booster can continue working after a high-risk exposure to the virus, although testing is recommended. Read more from the ADA.

The New York Health and Essential Rights Act (NY HERO Act) 

In September of 2021, Governor Kathy Hochul designated COVID-19 as an airborne infectious disease covered under the HERO Act. As of February 15, 2022, COVID-19 continued to be designated as such. The HERO Act requires workplaces to meet or exceed minimum requirements of health and safety protocols in response to the pandemic. The New York State Department of Labor developed various model plans that workplaces can adopt. Learn more from the Department of Labor.

OSHA Requirements

The OSHA requirements to help reduce workplace exposure to COVID-19 are still in effect. The requirements include following proper personal protective equipment (PPE) standards and recording cases of COVID-19 that meet certain criteria. Learn more from OSHA.

If you have questions about the changes or about the ongoing regulations related to COVID-19, the MLMIC team can help you make sense of what applies to your dental practice. For more information related to risk management and COVID-19, visit the MLMIC Dental blogThe Scope: Dental EditionDental Impressions and our Twitter and LinkedIn pages.