House passes workplace violence prevention bill

The House of Representatives today passed by a vote of 254-166 the Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Service Workers Act (H.R. 1195). 

The legislation would direct the Secretary of Labor to issue an interim final standard requiring employers in the health care and social service sectors to develop and implement a workplace violence prevention plan based on Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines published in 2015. 

The bill would require employers to provide annual training and education to employees; maintain detailed records of workplace violence risk, hazard assessments and violent incidents; and submit annual summaries of such incidents to the Secretary of Labor.  
In opposing the House bill, AHA reaffirmed hospitals and health systems’ commitment to a culture of safety for every worker, patient and family member. However, because hospitals have already implemented specifically tailored policies and programs to address workplace violence, the AHA does not believe that the OSHA standards required by H.R. 1195 are warranted, nor does the association support an expedited approach that would deny the public the opportunity to review and comment on proposed regulations.