- Safety and Health Topics
- Medical Access Order
Medical Access Order
OSHA standard 29 CFR 1913.10(a) states: OSHA access to employee medical records will, in certain circumstances, be important to the agency's performance of its statutory functions. Medical records, however, contain personal details concerning the lives of employees. Due to the substantial personal privacy interests involved, OSHA authority to gain access to personally identifiable employee medical information will be exercised only after the agency has made a careful determination of its need for this information, and only with appropriate safeguards to protect individual privacy.
Once this information is obtained, OSHA examination and the use of it will be limited to only that information needed to accomplish the purpose (or access). Personal identifiable employee medical information will be retained by OSHA only for so long as needed to accomplish the purpose for access. This will be kept secure while being used and will not be disclosed to other agencies or members of the public except in narrowly defined circumstances.
Medical access orders (MAOs) are addressed in specific OSHA standards for General Industry, Rules Concerning OSHA Access to Employee Medical Records, and Shipyard Employment.
Provides links and references to additional resources related to medical access orders.
Workers have the right to:
- Working conditions that do not pose a risk of serious harm.
- Receive information and training (in a language and vocabulary the worker understands) about workplace hazards, methods to prevent them, and the OSHA standards that apply to their workplace.
- Review records of work-related injuries and illnesses.
- File a complaint asking OSHA to inspect their workplace if they believe there is a serious hazard or that their employer is not following OSHA's rules. OSHA will keep all identities confidential.
- Exercise their rights under the law without retaliation, including reporting an injury or raising health and safety concerns with their employer or OSHA. If a worker has been retaliated against for using their rights, they must file a complaint with OSHA as soon as possible, but no later than 30 days.
For additional information, see OSHA's Workers page.
How to Contact OSHA
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to help ensure these conditions for America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov or call OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742), TTY 1-877-889-5627.