Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents
• Standard Number: 1904; 1904.7(b)(3)(3) ; 1904.7(b)(3)(ii); 1904.7(b)(3)(iii)


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.


March 19, 2003

Ms. Marcia Seeler
Health and Safety Consultant
Post Office Box 3154
Wellfleet, Massachusetts 02667

Dear Ms. Seeler:

Thank you for your January 6, 2003 letter to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding the Injury and Illness Recording and Reporting requirements contained in 29 CFR Part 1904. You state that an employee who sustained a work-related bruise on his knee was told by a physician not to return to work until undergoing an MRI, and that the employee was off work for some days before the procedure could be performed. You recorded the case based on the days away from work, and ask whether the entry may now be lined out because the MRI showed that no OSHA recordable injury occurred.

The case was properly recorded based on the physician's recommendation that the employee not return to work before undergoing an MRI for his bruised knee. Paragraph 1904.7(b)(3) contains the requirements for recording work-related injuries and illnesses that result in days away from work and for counting the total number of days away associated with a given case. In addition, paragraphs 1904.7(b)(3)(ii) and 1904.7(b)(3)(iii) direct employers how to record days away cases when a physician or other licensed health care professional (HCP) recommends that the injured or ill worker stay at home or that he or she return to work but the employee chooses not to do so. As these paragraphs make clear, OSHA requires employers to follow the physician's or HCP's recommendation when recording a case. For purposes of OSHA recordkeeping, the case met the criteria in section 1904.7 at the time of recording because the employee had sustained a work-related injury—a bruised knee—involving one or more days away from work. The subsequent MRI results do not change these facts. Accordingly, the MRI results are not a basis to line out the entry.

Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. We hope you find this information helpful. 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 appraised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at
http://www.osha.gov. If you have any further questions, please contact the Division of Recordkeeping Requirements at 202-693-1702.

Sincerely,


John L. Henshaw
Assistant Secretary


Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents Standard Interpretations - Table of Contents