OSHA: Taming the Beast

OSHA regulations are really simple, but you would never know that from reading the tons of jibber jabber on the OSHA website. OSHA has taken a simple idea and complicated it, throwing in a lot of jargon and citing various regulations. OSHA simply stated says "protect your employees from potential hazards in the workplace." Great! But then comes the tons of pages of regulations of how we do this, with no real guidance for the veterinary profession.

It doesn't help matters that fines have increased and OSHA no longer can be relied upon to reduce, or drop, proposed fines upon compliance. As of September 2019, the fine per violation can be over $13,000.00. And usually more than one violation is found. Couple that with the increase in complaints filed anonymously via the OSHA online whistle blower site and you have a true source of anxiety for the practice owner and the practice team member who was assigned the job of heading up OSHA compliance.

Welcome to a program that will simplify OSHA management for your veterinary practice. Here practices will learn the simple rules they need to be aware of and how the rules apply to the uniqueness that is veterinary medicine. We all want a safe and healthy workplace. We all want to do our best to prevent injuries. We all just want to be able to do our jobs without worrying about all of the government regulations and if we are compliant.

This program walks the practice through the regulations and through the process of completing the required paperwork in the form of a manual for OSHA compliance. It includes not only in-depth training for the person heading up OSHA for the practice, it includes training for members of the practice team. This training is an OSHA requirement.

This program gives you the confidence to know your practice is OSHA compliant and well prepared for an inspection.

This course requires employment at a practice to complete one or more assignments.


Canadian OHSA

The program contains information specific to Canada's Occupational Health and Safety Act . This program is appropriate for Canadian veterinary practices and members as well.


The Practice Owner and the OSHA Program Coordinator

In the eyes of OSHA the buck stops with the business owner. For veterinary practices this means that any fines or penalties are levied on the practice owner and only on the practice owner. Therefore, providing the training and resources to achieve compliance is a financially sound decision.

OSHA compliance is not a one man show. It is truly a team effort. However, each practice needs to have someone who heads up the process of reaching and maintaining compliance. Here at VetMedTeam we call that person the OSHA Program Coordinator.

The OSHA Program Coordinator does not need to be, and in many cases should not be, the owner or practice administrator. Instead, a team member with the characteristics to head up compliance efforts should be in this role. Regardless of whomever takes on this role, the person needs to be detailed oriented and organized. Often there are team members who are hidden gems and who would be excited to serve the practice in an expanded role.

In order to be successful, the OSHA Program Coordinator must have the full backing of the practice owner and the practice manager or administrator. This includes providing financial resources and allowing time apart from regular responsibilities. It also includes making the entire team aware that OSHA compliance is a top priority.


Program Components

The program is available for enrollment 24/7/365. It consists of two separate courses, both included when enrolling in the program. The first course is RACE and VHMA approved. Approval details are provided within the catalog page for the first course.

The first, Demystifying OSHA: Training the OSHA Program Coordinator and Building the Safety Manual, is taken by the person in the practice who will be responsible for overseeing the practice's compliance protocols. It is within this course that the practice's OSHA Program Coordinator will learn the ins and outs of OSHA. Via a set of very focused assignments, the OSHA Program Coordinator will work to build the veterinary practice's OSHA Safety Manual, all under the guidance of Chery Kendrick, DVM, MPVM, MLT, ASCP, CFS, a veterinarian and a regulatory expert.

The template and forms for the Safety Manual are provided within the program and included in the enrollment fee. The reading content within the course is meant to be shared with practice owners and managers as they must be aware of the ins and outs of OSHA as well.

The second component is the Demystifying OSHA: Veterinary Team Training course which is designed specifically for the other veterinary practice team members, including associates. It it a major part of meeting the requirement that every team member be trained in all things OSHA, so they can support the efforts of the practice to be not only OSHA compliant but a safer workplace. More information on this course is available on the link to the primary course below. The team training course is free for up to 25 enrollments for up to 12 months after the main course is completed.

This program is not an online version of a lecture that says "you need to be compliant, now go figure out how." Instead it is a very practical way to change from "we need to be OSHA compliant" to "we are OSHA compliant."


Participant Feedback

Participants were asked what they found most beneficial:

...I was floundering as the OSHA Program Coordinator at my clinic for some time - it just felt completely overwhelming. This course allowed me to identify and correct problems, build the safety manual, and put together an action plan for continued compliance in a controlled and organized way. Stellar class.

...One of the most helpful things about this course is the step-by-step process to become OSHA compliant. The instructor feedback and guidance was extremely helpful and greatly appreciated.

...As a newly appointed OSHA Safety Officer for the practice I work for, this course was very user friendly and informative. I learned so much from this and the feedback from the instructor was always encouraging and she has a quick response time.

...I found the assignments where I had to walk around my practice and confirm that things were labeled correctly to be very beneficial. I also found it helpful that we got feedback on all of the assignments and were able to ask for help if needed.

...I found this course challenging and well worth the effort. It has taken me many months to get through it and I am glad that I took the time I needed to digest the information. I feel less intimidated now, although no less daunted! I think the course is well organized and as clear as one can make such broad and detailed material. Anyone who genuinely tackles this material will find it helpful.

...Step by step assembly of the safety manual that is adapted for my practice.

...We had set 4 goals for the practice to focus on. Creating a revised safety manual, Training for new hires, Monthly safety check-ins and topics with all staff, and to create a schedule for safety procedures throughout the practice getting everyone involved. We feel we are on the way to meeting each goal and have a plan to maintain as well as move forward.

...I found the downloadable forms and templates the most beneficial and helpful to setting up the practice's safety manual.

...The whole course was very useful! It was great having the charts available and then having the access to change them to fit the needs of the clinic where I am at. This make me feel way more confident on our safety protocols and that we were doing most of it correctly but need to change some items in order to be fully compliant. The great thing is they are easy fixes and can do it with very minimal changes. I also love the fact we now have a plan on how to update it each week, month, year! Thanks this was very helpful.

...The OSHA reading document was well laid out, and easy to read. I appreciate how the sections were broken up to get you on board with OSHA standards. Dr. Kendrick was always available to help answer my questions.



The enrollment fee for the Demystifying OSHA: Veterinary Practice Compliance and Training Program includes both the OSHA Program Coordinator's course and the team training course. Up to 25 team members may be enrolled in the course after the main course is completed, for up to one-year post completion. The value of the team course alone, for 25 participants, would be over $1500.00.

The full program fee is $699.00.

Multi-location Practices:

Veterinary practices that have more than one location, regardless of ownership set-up, are required by OSHA to have each location independently compliant with an onsite OSHA Program Coordinator. Please access this document to learn more about the OSHA requirements for Multi-Location Practices.

The program fee of $699.00 is for one physical practice location only. The document link above includes the discounted pricing for multiple locations.


More Info or To Enroll

To learn more about the Demystifying OSHA: Training the OSHA Program Coordinator and Building the Safety Manual course, just click on the title. This new page will also provide the option to enroll.