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What to Expect During an OSHA Inspection

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) ensures the safety of the U.S. workforce. Maintaining the well-being of healthcare workers is not only the law, but OSHA also ensures that healthcare workers will continue to provide critical services because they are in safe and sustainable work environments. San Diego Medical Waste has the insight you need for an onsite, OSHA inspection.

OSHA's Preparation

Before conducting an inspection, OSHA compliance officers research the inspection history of a worksite using various data sources. They also review the operations and processes in use and the standards most likely to apply. They gather appropriate personal protective equipment and testing instruments to measure potential hazards. The on-site inspection begins with the presentation of the compliance officer’s credentials, which include both a photograph and a serial number.

Opening Conference

The compliance officer will explain why OSHA selected the workplace for inspection and describe the scope of the inspection, walk around procedures, employee representation and employee interviews. The employer then selects a representative to accompany the compliance officer during the inspection. An authorized representative of the employees, if any, also has the right to accompany an inspector. The compliance officer will consult privately with a reasonable number of employees during the inspection.

Walk Around

Following the opening conference, the compliance officer and the representatives will walk through the portions of the workplace covered by the inspection, inspecting for hazards that could lead to employee injury or illness. The compliance officer will also review worksite injury and illness records and the posting of the official OSHA poster.

During the walk around, compliance officers may point out some apparent violations that can be corrected immediately. While the law requires that these hazards must still be cited, prompt correction is a sign of good faith on the part of the employer. Compliance officers try to minimize work interruptions during the inspection and will keep confidential any trade secrets observed.

Closing Conference

After the walk around, the compliance officer holds a closing conference with the employer and the employee representatives to discuss the findings. The compliance officer discusses possible courses of action an employer may take following an inspection, which could include an informal conference with OSHA or contesting citations and proposed penalties. The compliance officer also discusses consultation services and employee rights.

For more information about OSHA compliance and proper medical waste disposal, contact San Diego Medical Waste Services, LLC, for more information: or 619-990-4604.