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GAO gives OSHA Outreach Training Program a thumbs-up on efficiency

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Photo: OSHA.gov

Washington – OSHA’s Outreach Training Program, which educated nearly 900,000 workers about occupational hazard recognition and prevention during fiscal year 2016, is operating efficiently, according to a Government Accountability Office report released March 9.

GAO examined the following criteria, as outlined in the report:

  • The extent to which the Outreach Training Program aligns with leading practices in designing an effective training program
  • The process for documenting successful completion of the training and whether internal controls are in place to ensure completion is accurately documented
  • How OSHA oversees training providers and assesses the results of the program

For its assessment, GAO compared OSHA’s design and evaluation efforts for its training program with leading practices in GAO’s training guide (which OSHA is not required to follow) and federal internal control standards. GAO also analyzed fiscal years 2012-2016 data from OSHA (the most recent year for which data was available) on time frames for processing completion card requests from online training providers, in addition to interviewing nine online training providers and five in-person training providers and OSHA officials.

Based on its finding, GAO stated that it will not issue any recommendations for OSHA.

“OSHA took steps to design the Outreach Training Program so that workers receive consistent and quality training by using data to identify the content of the training, developing training materials, and issuing detailed requirements for training providers,” the report states. “According to OSHA officials, the content of the training was selected after the agency reviewed data on the leading causes of worker deaths and the most frequently cited OSHA standards.”

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