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Safe Patient Handling

The Hospital Patient and Health Care Worker Injury Protection Act (AB 1136) became effective on January 1, 2012. This law, which has been incorporated into the California Labor Code as Section 6403.5 requires general acute care hospitals to adopt a safe patient handling policy as part of the Injury and Illness Prevention Program. The law does not apply to hospitals operated by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation or the California Department of Developmental Services.

Cal/OSHA held advisory meetings on January 24 and March 29, 2012 to develop an implementing regulation.  The meeting minutes and additional information are available at the advisory committee webpage: http://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/DoshReg/5120Meetings.htm

The Cal/OSH Standards Board adopted the new regulation on June 19, 2014, after a public hearing on Sept. 19, 2013.  The new section, General Industry Safety Orders §5120. Health Care Worker Back and Musculoskeletal Injury Prevention, became effective Oct. 1, 2014, http://www.dir.ca.gov/Title8/5120.html.

Links:

Cal/OSHA’s Interim Implementation Policy

Cal/OSHA’s Safe Patient Handling Frequently Asked Questions

Technical documents and handouts