First off let me say Happy New Year to everyone, we hope you had a great time whatever you did to celebrate.
As it is a new year, we thought it would be a good idea to give you a brief overview of the changes that were made to the health and safety regulations last year and what might be happening this year.
Before any new health and safety regulation can come into effect, a period of consultation must be held, so that all aspects of new policy have been discussed. The reason this is done is to make sure the regulations are more effective when they come into force – helping to improve the working lives of employees and reduce dangers to the public. Basically making life a little bit easier (and safer) for all of us.
There were a few consultations that took place near the end of 2012, which should be in force shortly:
The first consultation related to the regulation of first-aid at work and the decision to remove the requirement for the Health and Safety Executive to approve first aid training and qualifications. Doing this will mean that employers will be able to meet their first aid needs whilst having greater flexibility in the choice of training provider.
The next consultation proposed regulations to implement Council Directive 2010/32/EU on preventing sharps injuries in the hospital and healthcare sector. The proposed changes build on the current regulations and will:
- Identify a number of specific risk control measures that will need to be taken
- Provide detail on what must be included in the info and training given to employees
- Require employers to work with safety representatives in providing information to workers
These changes will only affect employers whose main activity is the managing, organising and provisions of healthcare, and employers who provide services to a healthcare employer.
A consultation took place on the proposals to simplify and clarify RIDDOR reporting requirements. The aim of these revised regulations is to ensure that the supply of useful information is retained but the process of reporting the information is simpler. The new reporting regulations should:
- Focus on operational needs
- Ensure that there is enough data for the HSE and others to act in a risk based manner
- Remove the duty to report occupational diseases where the information is unnecessary
- Simplify the language used in the reporting requirements
- Provide clear guidance of what must be reported, giving examples, and what shouldn’t be reported
The final consultation that took place last year was on proposals to exempt some self-employed people from health and safety legislation. The exemption will only affect persons who:
- Are self-employed
- Do not employ anyone
- Pose no potential risk or harm to others
- Do not work in a “prescribed sector”
To find out more information on the consultations discussed above or for some advice on how these might affect you please visit the contact us page and fill in our form or give us a call on 0844 488 9205.