China China publishes Regulations on Management of Occupational Health at Workplaces

On December 31, 2020, the National Health Commission of China released the “Regulations on the Management of Occupational Health at Workplaces”, which will take effect on February 1, 2021. It is a detailed regulation of the “Law on the Prevention of Occupational Diseases”, which was enacted in 2001 and revised for the 4th time on December 29, 2018. It replaces the “Regulations on Supervision and Management of Occupational Health at Workplaces ” released on April 27, 2012, and the old regulation will be abolished. The new regulation stipulates the measures to prevent occupational diseases taken by employers and supervision and management measures by the authorities. The main contents are as following.

Chapter 1 General Provisions (Article 1-7)

The employer is the responsible entity for the prevention of occupational diseases and is responsible for the risk of occupational diseases in the workplace. The National Health Commission shall be responsible for the supervision and management of occupational health in the workplace. The competent departments of health of local governments above the county level shall be responsible for the supervision and management of occupational health in workplaces within the relevant administrative area. Occupational health technical service organizations that provide technical services for the prevention of occupational diseases shall provide technical services for employers.

Chapter 2 Employer’s Responsibility (Article 8-37)

In workplace where the risk of occupational diseases is high and in workplace with more than 100 employees where the risk of occupational diseases exists, an occupational health management organization shall be established or designated, and full-time occupational health management personnel shall be assigned. For workplaces with less than 100 employees, the occupational health management personnel may serve concurrently. Employers must provide workers with pre-employment occupational health training and periodic occupational health training during their employment. Workers at workplace where there is a high risk of occupational diseases shall not be allowed to work at their workplaces until they have undergone and passed specialized occupational health training. When there is a change in process, technology, equipment, materials, or workplace, and the occupational disease risk changes, the workers must undergo another occupational health training. In workplaces where occupational disease risk exists, an occupational disease risk prevention plan and implementation plan, occupational health management system, and operating rules shall be established.

Chapter 3 Supervision and Management (Article 38-46)

The competent department of health shall supervise and inspect employers on the implementation of laws, regulations, rules and standards for the prevention of occupational diseases.

Chapter 4 Legal Liability (Article 47-56)

(stipulates the amount of fine for violation of each provisions)

Chapter 5 Supplementary Provisions (Article 57-60)

The original text of the above can be viewed at the following website of the National Health Commission (in simplified Chinese)

http://www.nhc.gov.cn/fzs/s3576/202101/2a5be92cd14449caaa2ea685cc44ea64.shtml