OSHA proposes change to improve illness data accuracy

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed revising its Occupational Injury and Illness Recording and Reporting regulation by restoring a column on its Form 300, Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses, to better identify work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The rule would not change existing requirements for when and under what circumstances employers must record MSDs on injury and illness logs.

Many employers currently are required to record workplace injuries and illnesses, including work-related MSDs, on OSHA's Form 300. The proposed rule would require employers to place a check mark in a column for all MSDs they have recorded.

The proposed requirements are identical to those contained in the OSHA recordkeeping regulation issued in 2001. Before 2001, OSHA's injury and illness logs contained a column for repetitive trauma disorders that included noise and MSDs. In 2001, OSHA separated noise and MSDs into two separate columns; however, the MSD column was deleted in 2003 before the provision took effect.