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As the world readjusts post-pandemic, the Oregon Occupational Safety & Health Division has enacted a permanent workplace safety rule directly related to COVID-19. While mask mandates have been largely scaled back, the new rule establishes that higher risk work environments, such as urgent care, doctors’ and dentists’ offices, dialysis facilities, hospitals, and emergency rooms, will continue to require masks; in such situations, the employer will be obligated to provide masks. The rule, however, does not require healthcare employers to screen individuals for COVID symptoms, enforce social distancing requirements, or continue contact tracing.

In non-healthcare employment settings, the employer is required to permit employees who choose to wear a mask to do so. There are also guidelines available for employers on how to accommodate employees who wish to wear a filtering facepiece respirator, which are used to filter particles out of the air while the wearer breathes. Any employer who requires COVID testing is also required to cover any time and travel expenses incurred by an employee who must be tested.

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