COVID-19 pandemic: OSHA issues guidance for retail pharmacy workers
Washington — To help protect retail pharmacy workers from exposure to COVID-19, OSHA has issued a safety alert.
The alert features a series of tips for employers, including:
- Install clear, plastic barriers between workers and customers at order and pickup counters.
- Supply workers with gloves and eye and face protection, as needed. Allow workers to wear a cloth facial covering or surgical mask over their nose and mouth.
- Provide an area for workers to wash their hands.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as checkout and customer service counters.
- Consult OSHA’s health care worker and employer guidance for workers who may need additional protections, including those providing clinical services to patients.
- Encourage workers to stay home when sick.
In April, a coalition of 12 national pharmacy associations issued a set of joint policy recommendations to address the pandemic. The coalition notes that pharmacists “are among the nation’s most accessible health care professionals, with 90% of Americans living within five miles of a community pharmacy.”