What responsibilities do DHBs and other employers have in a pandemic situation?
DHBs are required to have local readiness and response plans in place when there is a pandemic situation and have developed a hospital response framework and variety of national guidance to set out how the hospital will operate under various circumstances. NZNO is also meeting daily with DHBs to address issues as they arise.
NZNO also recommends that all health facilities have up-to-date disaster and pandemic guidelines for employee health and safety.
The employer’s primary duty of care under the HSWA is to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, the health and safety of workers. The HSWA also requires employers to engage with their workers on decisions that affect their health and safety.
Note that employers are obliged to meet all leave and consultation provisions under the terms of any collective agreement they have entered into with NZNO.