AB 1136, the Hospital Patient and Health Care Worker Injury Protection Act, adds Labor Code Section 6403.5, which requires health care employers to adopt a patient protection and health care worker back and musculoskeletal injury prevention plan. The plan must provide trained lift teams in each general acute care hospital. Employers must also provide training, including appropriate use of lifting devices and equipment, for health care workers.

The new law also mandates adoption of a safe patient handling policy, which requires health facilities to replace manual lifting and transferring of patients with powered patient transfer devices, lifting devices, and lift teams. Finally, the new law prohibits disciplinary action by a hospital if a health care worker refuses to lift, reposition, or transfer a patient due to concerns about patient or worker safety or the lack of trained lift team personnel.