Pa Law To Ban Mandatory Overtime At Hospitals
PA Law to Ban Mandatory Overtime at Hospitals
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell has signed into law a bill that will prohibit health care facilities from requiring mandatory overtime of staff. The law is set to take effect in July 2009. It will protect nurses, technicians, technologists, certified nursing assistants and phlebotomists, and other caregivers from being disciplined or discriminated against for refusing to work overtime.
Mandatory overtime would be allowed in some cases, such as a natural disaster, but it could be used only as a last resort and employees would have to be given one hour to arrange for family care. Employers also are prohibited from using on-call time in place of mandatory overtime. Violators can be fined from $100 to $1,000 per violation.
According to Governor Rendell, the new law will help ensure patient safety because there has been a problem with nurses throughout the state being overworked and overtired and potentially error-prone in their jobs.
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