Due to the complexity of hospital construction, OSHPD serves as the building official for all hospital general acute-care inpatient facilities in California. To determine the clinic buildings under OSHPD’s jurisdiction, see the Clinic CAN. OSHPD is responsible for the plan review and area compliance activities for hospital construction. Once OSHPD’s work has been completed, OSHPD notifies the Department of Public Health Licensing and Certification Program, which provides a certificate of occupancy for the new building/service.
OSHPD receives its authority under the Hospital Facilities Seismic Safety Act (HFSSA), which was enacted in 1973. The HFSSA originally pertained only to new construction or retrofits/renovations that affect the structural integrity of the building. Following the Northridge Earthquake, SB 1953 (Chapter 740, Statutes of 1994) was enacted, which established deadlines hospitals need to meet to remain operational. This is referred to as Seismic Mandate. In carrying out the Hospital Facilities Seismic Safety Act, the OSHPD Director receives advice/consultation from the HBSB as needed.
The Facility Guidelines Institute (FGI) has issued its 2014 Guidelines for Design and Construction of Hospitals and Outpatient Facilities, including requirements for psychiatric hospitals and psychiatric outpatient centers. The guidelines require hospitals to use a safety risk assessment to identify and mitigate hazards and risks – such as falls, medication errors, infections, immobility-related health outcomes, security breaches and musculoskeletal injuries – for patients, staff or visitors. To assist providers with the risk assessment process, the National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems has released its Design Guide for the Built Environment of Behavioral Health FacilitiesEdition 6.2, which includes an online patient safety risk assessment tool to meet the FGI’s requirement. The guide identifies hundreds of resources, from door levers to security glass, that are appropriate for use in the behavioral health care setting.
An important registration and reporting deadline for owners and operators of facilities with non-residential refrigeration systems, including hospitals, is approaching on March 1, 2014. The deadline applies to facilities with refrigeration systems using high global warming-potential refrigerants with a full charge of at least 200 pounds and less than 2,000 pounds. These systems are designated as “medium-sized” under a California state regulation to minimize leaks of environmentally harmful refrigerants.
Facilities must register their refrigeration system with the California Air Resources Board (ARB) by March 1, 2014, if the single largest system at an individual facility has a full charge of 200 pounds or more of the following refrigerants: chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), hydro chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) or hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) as well as any refrigerants with global warning potential (GWP) equal to or greater than a GWP value of 150.
Southern California hospitals in the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) are already reporting refrigerant storage and usage for both refrigeration and air conditioning cooling systems. Please see the end of this article for more information on how SCAQMD hospitals are affected by the March 1 deadline.
The online registration and reporting tool, known as the “Refrigerant Registration and Reporting System,” or R3, along with training materials and information about a Jan. 14 ARB webinar, are available on the program’s website.
The Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development has informed CHA that all hospitals required to submit reports as required under SB 499 (Chapter 601, Statutes of 2009) met the Nov. 1 deadline. SB 499 reports are required to be submitted annually by hospitals with SPC-1 buildings, providing information on how each hospital plans to become seismic-compliant by its specific mandated deadlines.
On January 23, 2013, the California Building Standards Commission adopted emergency regulations revising the 2010 California Building Standards Code. One of the key areas impacted was signage. Hospitals have a lot of signs — large hospitals may have up to 80 or more different types. Find out about the emergency regulations and what you need to do to comply.
The filing of the SB 499 form is required by law to assess the status of hospital seismic compliance. Recently, the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) made improvements to the reporting process. In this webinar, OSHPD faculty explain the changes to the online reporting form and and share practices to improve filing accuracy.