Yesterday, the federal Department of Health and Human Services announced it will delay by four months its expansion of protections for health workers. Referred to as the “conscience rule,” the regulation would protect health care workers who refuse to participate in services — such as abortion, sterilization, and assisted suicide — that run counter to their religious beliefs or moral convictions.
One of CHA’s highest legislative priorities this year has been Senate Bill (SB) 227 (Leyva, D-Chino), which would create duplicative and mandatory fines for hospitals if they do not meet required nurse staffing ratios. With help from member hospitals, our advocacy generated key amendments last week, including:
An exemption for hospitals that — in response to an unforeseeable and uncontrollable fluctuation — promptly make an effort to maintain staffing requirements
A 50% reduction in the fines (now $15,000 for the first violation and $30,000 subsequently)
A reduction in the length of time required to revert to a first violation (lowered from six years to three)
CHA has extended the deadline for its Advocacy Alert asking members to urge their assemblymembers to oppose Senate Bill (SB) 227, which would create an unreasonable, mandatory penalty system for hospitals that do not meet nurse staffing ratios. The deadline for letters is now 5 p.m. on June 11.
On April 17, the Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (UHW) filed a local ballot initiative with the city of Los Angeles that would place a cap on hospital executive compensation. The measure — called the “Public Health and Fair Pay for Hospital Executives Ordinance” — would cap total compensation for “covered executives” at no more than what the U.S. President is paid (currently $450,000 annually).
Earlier this week, CHA sent an Advocacy Alert to hospital leaders about Senate Bill 227 (Leyva, D-Chino), a bill that would create significant penalties for hospitals that do not meet nurse staffing ratios. CHA urges hospital leaders to contact their representatives about this harmful bill, which would increase costs without providing any benefit to patients.
CHA sent a letter to the California congressional delegation this week, urging support of the Resident Physician Shortage Act of 2019 (H.R. 1763), which takes steps to reduce nationwide physician shortages by increasing the number of Medicare-supported residency positions.
CHA’s members-only Hospital Employee Safety and Workers’ Compensation Seminar is coming March 14 to Costa Mesa and March 20 to Sacramento. While providing a safe work environment is always the goal, hospitals need to understand how to get their employees the help they need when they get injured, while remaining compliant with California employment law.
CHA recently submitted a comment letter to the Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) on its draft regulations for minimizing heat-related illness among workers in indoor places of employment.
Earlier this week, a California appellate court issued a published decision interpreting California’s reporting time pay requirement. While the decision in Ward v. Tilly’s Inc. was not unanimous and could be appealed to the California Supreme Court, employers should take note of the case’s reasoning.
CHA’s annual members-only Hospital Employee Safety and Workers’ Compensation Seminar – set for March 14 in Costa Mesa and March 20 in Sacramento – will include facilitated roundtable discussions, a question and answer session on the various workers’ compensation challenges hospitals face daily, and a discussion of the toll California wildfires took on two hospitals’ leadership and staff.