DOLE: Security guards now mandatory in medical clinics, laboratories

Autonomous micro-health facilities and laboratories operating nine or fewer workers are now required to have security guards, the Labor and Employment Ministry said Thursday.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the requirement was based on Labor Opinion No. 20, 2021 series, which aims “to further ensure strict compliance with occupational safety and health on all workplaces “.

According to the labor opinion, it requires the compliance of stand-alone micro-health care and related facilities with the Occupational Safety and Health (OHS) Act (Republic Act 11058), its rules and regulations of application (ministerial decree n ° 198, series of 2018) and OSH standards.

The opinion said that stand-alone micro-health care and related establishments are those with no more than nine workers and operate independently from small, medium and large health care establishments and related establishments.

It includes medical and dental clinics, rest clinics, optical clinics, laboratories and other similar health care and related establishments.

“Our labor inspectors are subject to strict orders to enforce our occupational safety and health regulations. Severe penalties must be imposed on employers and workers who violate them. At the same time, however, we need to help them comply with the regulations, ”Bello said.

The Labor Secretary said designated safety and health personnel must have completed a four-year health-related course with the necessary knowledge of the standard of care and universal precautions.

He stressed that they must have completed security guard training 1 and first aid training at work.

“Health and safety personnel can also be a ‘traveling security guard’. This means they can also be assigned to another stand-alone micro-health facility and related facility with the same owner or employer within a five-kilometer radius, ”Bello said.

He added that the DOLE regional or field office will provide technical assistance regarding other compliance requirements of the establishments concerned. -NB, GMA News

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Susan W. Lloyd