Today's Law As Amended


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AB-2604 Public health: pandemic protocols.(2019-2020)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Article 12 (commencing with Section 1339.60) is added to Chapter 2 of Division 2 of the Health and Safety Code, to read:

Article  12. Pandemic and Health-Related Emergency Protocols for Health Facilities
1339.60.
 This article shall be known, and may be cited, as the Pandemic and Health-Related Emergency Protocols for Health Facilities Act.
1339.61.
 During a declared pandemic or health-related state of emergency or local emergency, as defined in Section 8558 of the Government Code, a health facility, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 1250, shall limit possible introduction of the pathogen, infection, or illness that is the focus of the pandemic or emergency into the health facility by doing both of the following:
(a) Postpone indefinitely an appointment for routine medical care that may be delayed without undue risk to the current or future health of the patient, including an annual physical or elective surgery.
(b) Prohibit visitor access. An exception shall be made for all of the following:
(1) A pediatric patient, who shall be entitled to two identified support persons who shall not visit the patient at the same time.
(2) A labor and delivery patient, who shall be entitled to one identified support person.
(3) An end-of-life visit, as reasonable.
(4) Another extraordinary circumstance, as medically safe and appropriate to protect patient safety.
1339.62.
 During a declared pandemic or health-related state of emergency or local emergency, as defined in Section 8558 of the Government Code, a health facility, as defined in subdivision (a) of Section 1250, shall institute universal precautions based on scientific evidence and universal source control procedures to reduce potential for transmission of the pathogen, infection, or illness that is the focus of the pandemic or emergency based on within the whole facility by doing all of the following:
(a) Ensure all patients and staff are always wearing surgical masks, except when a higher level of personal protective equipment (PPE) is indicated per the aerosol transmissible disease standards in Section 5199 of Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations, as that section read on April 28, 2020.
(b) Ensure thorough education and enforcement regarding hand hygiene and cough etiquette for patients and staff.
(c) Ensure consistent and regular environmental cleaning and disinfection, including disinfection of floors, walls, furniture, surfaces, and objects at least three times per day with cleaning chemicals that contain a disinfectant known to be effective against the pathogen, infection, or illness that is the subject of the pandemic or emergency.
(d) Add air cleaning equipment to ventilation systems, including ultraviolet cleaners and High Efficiency Particulate Air filter units.
(e) Establish three zones within the health facility using the “three zones, two passages” model to prevent transmission.
(1) The three zones, a contaminated zone, a potentially contaminated zone, and a clean zone, shall be clearly demarcated, with two buffer zones between the contaminated zone and potentially contaminated zone.
(2) A health facility shall have dedicated teams who only work in one particular zone.
(3) A separate passageway shall be established for each zone strictly for the one-way transport of items directly from that zone.
(4) A health facility shall implement strict procedures for donning and doffing PPE between zones, which shall include hands on training, full-length mirrors, and observation by trained personnel. Dedicated walkways shall be used to prevent transmission and contamination between zones.
(5) A health facility shall tightly control transport of patients and health workers through the facility to prevent transmission and contamination.
(f) Implement outdoor triage where patients are promptly triaged and sent to the appropriate zone to prevent transmission within crowded waiting rooms.
(g) Monitor all entrances to the facility and consider limiting public access by reducing the number of entrances.
(h) Consider all patients to have “suspected cases” of the pathogen, infection, or illness until confidently ruled out or confirmed.
SEC. 2.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district are the result of a program for which legislative authority was requested by that local agency or school district, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code and Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.