Oct 14 (Reuters) – An Illinois nursing facility was fined more than $83,000 for failing to protect its staff from COVID-19, the Labor Department said on Thursday, the largest penalty under a U.S. healthcare worker safety rule adopted during the pandemic.
West Suburban Nursing and Rehabilitation Center had six violations in a July inspection including failing to ensure that N95 respirators fit and were used properly, according to a statement from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), part of the Labor Department.
A staff member at the 249-bed facility in Bloomingdale, Illinois, died of COVID-19 last year.
OSHA in June adopted an emergency rule requiring healthcare employers to take steps to protect workers from COVID.
“After more than a year of fighting this pandemic, employers should know the procedures to minimize workers’ risk of exposure and take every precaution,” said Jake Scott, OSHA’s area director.
The facility did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Reporting by Daniel Wiessner in New York; Editing by Cynthia Osterman
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