Standard Interpretations - (Archived) Table of Contents|
|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.|
Mr. Dennis J. Morikawa
Morgan, Lewis, & Bockius Counselors at Law
2000 One Logan Square
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103-6993
Dear Mr. Morikawa:
Thank you for your letter of February 22, regarding an interpretation on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) policy for Mantoux skin testing. Your restatement of our phone conversation was correct in your understanding of OSHA's current policy. Workers that are directly exposed to tuberculosis (TB) patients including those involved with high hazard procedures are required to have an initial or baseline Mantoux skin test. For this category of workers, the Mantoux test must be repeated every six months. For all other employees who "share the air" in the same facility or building, an annual Mantoux test would be required. Employees that do not work in the same building where TB patients are treated and who do not "share the air" (in other words they do not have occupational exposure), the mantoux test would not be required. Also, as stated in your letter, if a facility does not have any TB patients and there is no occupational exposure, then no Mantoux tests are required.
If you have any further questions or concerns please contact [the Office of Health Enforcement at 202 693-2100].
Ruth McCully, Director
[Office of Health Enforcement]
February 22, 1995
Ms. Ruth McCully
[Directorate of Enforcement Programs]
U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20210
Re: Interpretations Regarding Policy Procedures for Mantoux Testing
Per our discussion yesterday, I would appreciate it if you could send me a clarification with respect to OSHA's position on the requirements for Mantoux skin tests for health care workers who have actual or potential exposure to patients infected with tuberculosis (TB).
From our discussions, my understanding is that employees who are directly exposed to TB patients, such as those involved in high hazard procedures, are required to have initial testing and six-month re-testing. All others who "share the air" in the same facility or building, whether or not working directly with such patients, are required to have annual Mantoux testing. By contrast, where TB patients are isolated to a specific building, it is my understanding that employees in other buildings are not required to have the Mantoux tests and in cases where a health care facility has no TB patients, no Mantoux tests are required.
I would appreciate it if you could confirm our discussion by way of a letter so that this can be maintained until such time as OSHA publishes a revised Directive.
Thank you very much for your cooperation.
Dennis J. Morikawa
DJM/aml cc: Sara Alexander
|Standard Interpretations - (Archived) Table of Contents|