CHA News Article

Cal/OSHA Releases Revised Workplace Violence Prevention Regulations
Delayed effective dates, computer-based learning and other good news for hospitals

On Aug. 2, Cal/OSHA released the attached revision of its proposed health care workplace violence prevention regulations. Comments on the revisions are due Aug. 17. CHA will convene its health care workplace violence prevention workgroup to develop a comment letter, and individual hospitals may submit comments to CHA for incorporation into its letter, or may submit comments to Cal/OSHA directly.

While CHA continues to have concerns about the proposed regulations, several significant changes were made, consistent with CHA’s previous comments:

  • While the obligation to maintain a violent incident log and comply with record keeping obligations will be required as of the regulations’ effective date, employers will have an additional year to comply with the remaining obligations (plan development, assessment and correction of current hazards and training). 
  • Training may be tailored to address the workplace violence risks that employees are reasonably anticipated to encounter in their jobs.
  • Employers will be able to utilize computer-based learning for initial and refresher training so long as it 1) covers all of the required elements and 2) employees are able to submit questions and, within 24 hours, receive a response from a person knowledgeable about the employer’s workplace violence prevention plan.
  • The employer will complete all aspects of the Violent Incident Log based on information solicited from the employee, rather than having the employee complete some portions.
  • Hospitals must report workplace violence incidents within 24 hours when 1) the incident involves a fatality or injury that requires inpatient hospitalization for more than 24 hours; or 2) there is an urgent or emergent threat that involves 911 assistance from law enforcement. All other reportable incidents must be reported within 72 hours. 

As noted in Monday’s CHA News article, Cal/OSHA Standards Board staff reported that Cal/OSHA is working toward having the final regulations heard at the Sept. 15 board meeting in Sacramento. Though this might be considered an aggressive timeline, Cal/OSHA must finalize the regulations by October or it will be required to start the process anew. The final regulations could be heard as late as the Oct. 20 board meeting. If finalized by the end of October, the regulations would likely go into effect Jan. 1, 2017.

Once the regulations are final, CHA’s Education Department will publish a Health Care Workplace Violence Prevention Regulation Guidebook and will offer a members-only webinar.