OARS - Privacy Case


If I record an injury and the employee is later diagnosed with an infectious blood borne disease, do I need to update the OSHA 300 Recordables form?

Yes, you must update the OARS Report by clicking on "Open OSHA 300 Form" and entering the new information.


What if one of my employees is splashed or exposed to blood or other potentially infectious material without being cut or scratched? Do I need to record this incident?

You need to record such an incident using the OSHA 300 Recordables form if:

  • It results in the diagnosis of a blood borne illness, such as HIV, hepatitis B, or hepatitis C;

OR

It meets one or more of the following criteria:

  • Death.
  • One day or more away from work.
  • Restricted work or transfer to another job.
  • Medical treatment beyond first aid.
  • Loss of consciousness.

Does the supervisor decide if an injury or illness is a privacy concern case?

No. EH&S must decide if a case is a privacy concern case, using a list that lists the six types of injuries and illnesses EH&S must consider privacy concern cases. If the case meets any of these criteria, the supervisor must consider it a privacy concern case. This is a complete list of all injury and illnesses considered privacy concern cases.

  • An injury or illness to an intimate body part or the reproductive system;
  • An injury or illness resulting from a sexual assault;
  • Mental illnesses;
  • HIV infection, hepatitis, or tuberculosis;
  • Needle stick injuries and cuts from sharp objects that are contaminated with another person's blood or other potentially infectious material (OPIM); and
  • Other illnesses, if the employee voluntarily requests that his or her name not be entered on the log.

Supervisors should keep all of these types of cases confidential. Supervisors must work with the injured employee to prevent a recurrence.


May I classify any other types of injuries and illnesses as privacy concern cases?

No, in the previous FAQ, there is a complete list of all injuries and illnesses considered privacy concern cases for reporting purposes.


If EH&S has removed the employee's name using the "Confidential" radio button, but EH&S still believes that the employee may be identified from the information on the forms, is there anything else that EH&S can do to further protect the employee's privacy?

Yes, if EH&S has a reasonable basis to believe that information describing the privacy concern case may be personally identifiable even though the employee's name has been omitted, EH&S may use discretion in describing the injury or illness. One way is to not use the Employees first name in narrative sections of the OARS Report. Identify this person as "Employee."

Supervisors must enter enough information to identify the cause of the incident and the general severity of the injury or illness, but you do not need to include details of an intimate or private nature. For example, a sexual assault case could be described as "injury from assault," or an injury to a reproductive organ could be described as "lower abdominal injury."


What if an employee gets injured while treating a patient?

You must fill out an OARS report. Check to see if the injury falls under any conditions that might make it a privacy case. Do not use any patient identifiers anywhere in the OARS report. If is is a workplace violence issue, be sure to contact the Public Safety Office/Safecampus/UWPD.