Division Title
Your Role

Supervisors & Managers

Supervisors and managers are responsible for ensuring and promoting safety in their work areas. Not only are supervisors required to assess hazards and put procedures in place to control hazards but they are also responsible to enforce safety policies. 

 

Below are resources and additional information regarding supervisor's and manager's safety responsibilities.

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Workplace Health Concerns

OSHA

Occupational Medical Service

Supervising Minors

Workers' Compensation Program

Reasonable Accommodations

Employee Assistance Program

IC Safety Committees

Ergonomics

Traveling and Transportation Safety

Publications

Contractor Safety Materials

Safety Responsibilities for Supervisors

Training

Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that their employees are trained in the safe practices required to recognize and control hazards in the workplace. Formal training is available through several resources. In addition, it is recommended that supervisors keep a record of any on-the-job training they conduct regarding safety.
 
The following training is available from DOHS: 

Training from non-DOHS affiliates & government:

 Supervisors are also required to provide the following training:

  • Emergency response and evacuation
  • How to report injuries, illnesses, spills, exposures and safety and health concerns
  • Working with hazardous materials
Your IC may have additional information on required training.  Please consult with your AO for more information.
 
Visit the Safety and Health Training website for more information.

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Workplace Health Concerns

Supervisors should contact their IC Safety and Health Specialist if they need help to identify workplace hazards and/or recommending appropriate hazard controls. Your IC Safety Specialist can help address a variety of concerns including mold , flooding, noise and air quality.  

 

If you have a pest issue (bugs, rodents, etc.) in your workplace, you should contact Integrated Pest Management

For more information about monitoring workplace hazards, please visit the Industrial Hygiene web page.
 

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OSHA

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) External Website oversees workplace safety. Federal and civilian contractor employees fall under the purview of OSHA. The OSHAct (Occupational Safety and Health Act) was made into law in 1970. Federal agencies were not covered by the law until 1980 when Executive Order 12196 External Website was issued; extending coverage of OSHA laws to federal employees. OSHA provides basic guidelines by which workplace safety should operate.
 
A Federal Employee Rights Poster is required to be placed in your workplace vicinity. You can print a NIH-specific poster from this link: NIH Employee Rights Poster.
 
For more information on how OSHA affects laboratories, refer to the Laboratory Worker's Resources webpage.   
 

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Occupational Medical Service

Occupational Medical Service

 

If an employee gets hurt, they need to report to Occupational Medical Service (OMS). OMS is open Monday-Friday,  7:30am-5pm. If an employee is exposed to biological materials outside of normal business hours, please have them call the Clinical Center Operator at 301-496-1211. All other types of injuries occurring outside of business hours should report their injury to Occupational Medicine by calling during the next business day at 301-496-4411. Any injury that occurs while at work should be reported within 24 hours. Serious injuries must be reported immediately. After an employee reports an injury, they will receive a follow-up inquiry from the IC Safety Specialist and an accident investigation will be conducted. Accident investigations help to identify areas needing improvement whether it is fixing sidewalks or retraining the employee. 

 

Everyone at NIH is entitled to receive emergency medical care at OMS, this includes including visitors, volunteers, contractors and federal employees.  For more information, visit Eligibility and OMS.

 

Pre-placement evaluations are required for some new employees. For more information, visit Pre-placement Evaluations.

 

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Supervising Minors

There are special laws governing minors who work. The NIH has developed policies and guidelines that provide guidance for supervision of minors.

States have laws restricting the hours minors may work. Be familiar with the labor laws for the state you work in:

The Department of Labor External Website also has information on minor labor.

Supervisors should prepare a parental consent letter for parents or legal guardians of minors to sign and return to the NIH. Minors are defined as students under the age of 18. This sample letter should be modified to include specific NIH assignments and potential hazards to which the student will be exposed. Specific IC supervisor contact information should be added, and the letter should be returned and maintained on file by the supervisor and/or IC student coordinator.

Safety Consent For Minors Working in NIH Labs This link opens a word document

 

All supervisors of minors in the laboratory need to review this guidance document to ensure that minors are not exposed to certain hazardous materials while working in NIH laboratories. As stated by the Deputy Director of Intramural Research, Dr. Michael Gottesman's Memorandum Summer Students and Laboratory Safety, "One of the most important roles we fill when introducing summer students to NIH laboratories is to demonstrate that safety is an integral part of planning and conducting science." For example, all students should be appointed under an approved hiring authority. Of special concern are those students who are under the age of 18- minors.

 

Please be aware that minors are prohibited from working with specific materials and that they are prohibited from working in specific areas. For example, minors may not work with:

 

In addition, should there be the need, report all accidents and promptly seek proper medical care from the Occupational Medical Service (OMS). Minors may need to receive pre-placement medical evaluations from the OMS, depending on their assignment.

 

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Reasonable Accommodations

You can find help for complying with reasonable accommodations through the Institute and Center Services Division of the NIH Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Management.


If you need help fitting a workspace to an employee, arrange for an ergonomics evaluation.


If you need more guidance about reasonable accommodations, contact the Employee Assistance Program.

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IC Safety Committees

 All work areas, including offices, are surveyed yearly by your IC Safety Committee. Visit the IC Safety Committee webpage to identify your IC Safety Chair. 

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Traveling and Transportation Safety

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