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SB 1788: Use lifts to 'greatest degree feasible'
Proposals would mandate SPH programs
The Nurse and Health Care Worker Protection Act of 2009 includes the following language requiring health care employers to purchase equipment for patient handling:
The safe patient handling and injury prevention standard shall require the use of engineering controls to perform lifting, transferring, and repositioning of patients and the elimination of manual lifting of patients by direct-care registered nurses and all other health care workers, through the use of mechanical devices to the greatest degree feasible except where the use of safe patient handling practices can be demonstrated to compromise patient care. The standard shall apply to all health care employers and shall require at least the following:
(1) Each health care employer to develop and implement a safe patient handling and injury prevention plan within 6 months of the date of promulgation of the final standard, which plan shall include hazard identification, risk assessments, and control measures in relation to patient care duties and patient handling.
(2) Each health care employer to purchase, use, maintain, and have accessible an adequate number of safe lift mechanical devices not later than 2 years after the date of issuance of a final regulation establishing such standard.
(3) Each health care employer to obtain input from direct-care registered nurses, health care workers, and employee representatives of direct-care registered nurses and health care workers in developing and implementing the safe patient handling and injury prevention plan, including the purchase of equipment.
(4) Each health care employer to establish and maintain a data system that tracks and analyzes trends in injuries relating to the application of the safe patient handling and injury prevention standard and to make such data and analyses available to employees and employee representatives.
(5) Each health care employer to establish a system to document in each instance when safe patient handling equipment was not utilized due to legitimate concerns about patient care and to generate a written report in each such instance. The report shall list the following:
(A) The work task being performed.
(B) The reason why safe patient handling equipment was not used.
(C) The nature of the risk posed to the worker from manual lifting.
(D) The steps taken by management to reduce the likelihood of manual lifting and transferring when performing similar work tasks in the future.
Such reports shall be made available to OSHA compliance officers, workers, and their representatives upon request within one business day.
(6) Each health care employer to train nurses and other health care workers on safe patient handling and injury prevention policies, equipment, and devices at least on an annual basis. Such training shall include providing information on hazard identification, assessment, and control of musculoskeletal hazards in patient care areas and shall be conducted by an individual with knowledge in the subject matter, and delivered, at least in part, in an interactive classroom-based and hands-on format.
(7) Each health care employer to post a uniform notice in a form specified by the Secretary that:
(A) explains the safe patient handling and injury prevention standard;
(B) includes information regarding safe patient handling and injury prevention policies and training; and
(C) explains procedures to report patient handling-related injuries.
(8) Each health care employer to conduct an annual written evaluation of the implementation of the safe patient handling and injury prevention plan, including handling procedures, selection of equipment and engineering controls, assessment of injuries, and new safe patient handling and injury prevention technology and devices that have been developed. The evaluation shall be conducted with the involvement of nurses, other health care workers, and their representatives and shall be documented in writing. Health care employers shall take corrective action as recommended in the written evaluation.