Special obligations

Special obligations

List of exposed employees

Employers must keep a list of all employees of theirs who have been exposed to biological agents that pose a serious danger or a risk of a serious illness through their work.

The list must show

  • The name and occupation of the exposed employee
  • The workplace’s field of activity and the nature of the work performed
  • Available information on the biological agent the employee was exposed to
  • Description of where and when the exposure event took place.
Every member of the work community must be familiar with the risks posed by any biological agents involved in their work and safe procedures.

The list must be kept for a period of at least 10 years from the date of exposure. The listing statute lists the exposure agents regarding which a list of exposed employees must be kept for 40 years after exposure.

The Occupational Safety and Health Act lists the organisations and individuals who have the right to request a copy of the list. The list must be handed over to occupational safety and health authorities if the employer goes out of business.

Notices

Occupational safety and health authorities must be notified before biological agents belonging to risk group 2, 3 or 4 are used for the first time. Notice must be given at least 30 days before the work is due to begin.

The notice must include

  • the name and address of the company or institution
  • the name and qualifications of the person responsible for occupational safety and health,
  • findings of risk assessments
  • the types of biological agents involved, and
  • the protective and preventive actions to be taken.

Laboratories that provide diagnostic services on group-4 biological agents only need to submit a notice of their intention to handle biological agents before they commence the service.

Employers must immediately notify occupational safety and health authorities of all accidents and incidents that could have led to the release of biological agents and that could pose a risk of a serious infection or illness.

Legislation:

Occupational Safety and Health Act (738/2002)

Act on Occupational Safety and Health Enforcement and Cooperation on Occupational Safety and Health at Workplaces (44/2006), the amendment (747/2020, in Finnish)

Government Decree on the List of Occupational Diseases (748/2020, in Finnish)