OARS - Days away from Work


How do I record a work-related injury or illness that results in days away from work?

When an injury or illness involves one or more days away from work, you must record the injury or illness using the UW Occupational Injury & Illness Report. Click "Yes"; enter the days away as a numerical entry of the number of calendar days away from work in the "Days away from work box. If the Employee is out for an extended period of time, you must enter an estimate of the days that the Employee will be away, and update the day count when the actual number of days is known. Updating will be done through the OIIR Tickler system. If more updating is needed, please call Occupational Safety & Health at 543-7388


Do I count the day on which the injury occurred or the illness began?

No, you begin counting days away on the day after the injury occurred or the illness began.


How do I record an injury or illness when a physician or other licensed health care professional recommends that the worker stay at home but the employee comes to work anyway?

You must record these injuries and illnesses on the UW Occupational Injury & Illness Report. Click "Yes"; enter the days away as a numerical entry of the number of calendar days away from work in the "Days away from work box. The numerical number should be the days recommended by the physician or other licensed health care professional. If a physician or other licensed health care professional recommends days away, you should encourage your employee to follow that recommendation. However, the days away must be recorded whether the injured or ill employee follows the physician or licensed health care professional's recommendation or not. If you receive recommendations from two or more physicians or other licensed health care professionals, you may make a decision as to which recommendation is the most authoritative, and record the case based upon that recommendation.


If an employee who sustains a work-related injury requiring days away from work is terminated for drug use based on the results of a post-accident drug test, how is the case recorded as an injury or illness? May the employer stop the day count upon termination of the employee for drug use?

The employer may stop counting days away from work if an employee who is away from work because of an injury or illness leaves the company for some reason unrelated to the injury or illness, such as retirement or a plant closing. However, when the employer conducts a drug test based on the occurrence of an accident resulting in an injury at work and subsequently terminates the injured employee, the termination is related to the injury. Therefore, the employer must estimate the number of days that the employee would have been away from work due to the injury and enter that number of days on the UW Occupational Injury Illness Report for recording purposes.


How do I handle a case when a physician or other licensed health care professional recommends that the worker return to work but the employee stays at home anyway?

In this situation, you must end the count of days away from work on the date the physician or other licensed health care professional recommends that the employee return to work.


How do I count weekends, holidays, or other days the employee would not have worked anyway?

You must count the number of calendar days the employee was unable to work as a result of the injury or illness, regardless of whether or not the employee was scheduled to work on those day(s). Weekend days, holidays, vacation days or other days off are included in the total number of days recorded if the employee would not have been able to work on those days because of a work-related injury or illness.


How do I record a case in which a worker is injured or becomes ill on a Friday and reports to work on a Monday, and was not scheduled to work on the weekend?

You need to record this case only if you receive information from a physician or other licensed health care professional indicating that the employee should not have worked, or should have performed only restricted work, during the weekend. If so, you must record the injury or illness as a case with days away from work or restricted work, and enter the day counts, as appropriate.


How do I record a case in which a worker is injured or becomes ill on the day before scheduled time off such as a holiday, a planned vacation, or a temporary plant closing?

You need to record a case of this type only if you receive information from a physician or other licensed health care professional indicating that the employee should not have worked, or should have performed only restricted work, during the scheduled time off. If so, you must record the injury or illness as a case with days away from work or restricted work, and enter the day counts, as appropriate.


Is there a limit to the number of days away from work I must count?

Yes, you may "cap" the total days away at 180 calendar days. You are not required to keep track of the number of calendar days away from work if the injury or illness resulted in more than 180 calendar days away from work and/or days of job transfer or restriction. In such a case, entering 180 in the total days away box will be considered adequate.


May I stop counting days if an employee who is away from work because of an injury or illness retires or leaves my company?

Yes, if the employee leaves your company for some reason unrelated to the injury or illness, such as retirement, a plant closing, or to take another job, you may stop counting days away from work or days of restriction/job transfer. If the employee leaves your company because of the injury or illness, you must estimate the total number of days away or days of restriction/job transfer and enter the day count in the days away from work in the box provided on the UW Occupational Injury & Illness Report.


If a case occurs in one year but results in days away during the next calendar year, do I record the case in both years?

No, you only record the injury or illness once. You must enter the number of calendar days away for the injury or illness on the UW Occupational Injury & Illness Report, days away from work box for the year in which the injury or illness occurred. You may still need to update the number of days away up to the cap of a total of 180 days if the employee is still away from work the next calendar year.