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OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.
November 13, 1992
Mr. David F. Coble, MS, CSP
605 Eastowne Drive
Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27514
Dear Mr. Coble:
Thank you for your letter dated November 3, requesting interpretations on OSHA injury and illness recordkeeping issues. I will restate your questions and refer to the Recordkeeping Guidelines for Occupational Injuries and Illnesses in my responses.
Q1 A doctor puts an employee into light duty from 7/27/92 to 8/14/92 and released her to come back to work on 8/17/92. During this time she took a medical leave to have a non-work related surgery, (female problems). So she took the medical leave on 8/1/92 and returned back to work on 8/17/92. Do we count the days from 8/1/92 to 8/14/92 restricted days, since she was on a personal medical leave? What if this was a pre-scheduled surgery?
A1 As you stated in your response, if the personal medical leave was scheduled prior to the injury, the medical leave days would not be counted as restricted workdays. However, the days should be counted as days of restricted work activity if the personal medical leave was not scheduled before the injury. (page 49, Q&A B-8)
Q2 If a pregnant lady is off work due to a work-related injury or illness and during that time she has to take her pregnancy leave, do we count the days of her pregnancy leave as lost workdays?
A2 Again, I agree with your stated response. When counting the number of days away from work or days of restricted work activity, do not include any days on which the employee would not have worked even though able to work. (page 47, section B) Count the lost workdays up to the time of the pre-arranged leave. Once the pre-arranged leave begins, you may stop counting the days. If the days away or days of restricted work activity continue after the pre-arranged leave ends, begin counting the days.
I hope you find this information useful. If you have any further questions, please contact my staff at Area Code (202) 219-6463.
Stephen A. Newell
Director Office of Statistics