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January 1, 2021: The Paid Family Leave benefits expanding

The program is expanding to offer benefits to any employee who takes time off to attend to situations (qualifying exigencies) related to the covered active duty status of the employee’s spouse, registered domestic partner, child or parent who is a member of the U.S. Armed Forces. This new law does not create a right to take a protected leave of absence, merely the ability to collect PFL benefits (after Jan. 1, 2021) if the employee does take the time off.

January 1, 2021: Controlled substances prescription form must have a unique serial number

Prescribers in need of new controlled substance prescription forms should ensure they order from an approved printer listed on the DOJ website. New prescription forms with serial numbers formatted in the manner prescribed by SB 149 may be available by early to mid-2020. Confirm with the printer that the form meets California’s serial number requirements for 2021 before ordering forms. Consider moving to e-prescribing for controlled substances which is expected to be mandatory January 1, 2022.

December 1, 2020 Small Business Hiring Tax Credit application portal opens today

The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) began accepting applications today for a small business hiring credit against California state income taxes or sales and use taxes. Qualified business employers who employed 100 or fewer employees as of December 31, 2019; and suffered a 50% decrease or more in income tax gross receipts when comparing second quarter 2020 to second quarter 2019, may apply between Dec. 1, 2020 through Jan. 15, 2021 to receive a credit of $1,000 for each net increase in qualified employees from April 1, 2020 through June 30, 2020. The credit reservations will be allocated to qualified small business employers on a first-come, first-served basis.

Employers should be prepared with all the required information to start their online application. Visit www.cdtfa.ca.gov/taxes-and-fees/SB1447-tax-credit.htm for details.

October 12, 2020: Submit compliance report for amalgam separators

Dental practices, including those that are exempt or want to claim an exemption to the requirement to install an amalgam separator, must submit a one-time compliance report to their local control authority. The report is available in most areas from the local sanitation agency. If a sanitation agency does not have a pretreatment program, then the dental practice must submit the report to the California State Water Resources Board.

 

September 19, 2020 - December 31, 2020 (unless FFCRA sunset extended) AB 1867 Overrides the FFCRA health care provider exemption.

The law includes language that any entity that employs health care providers or emergency responders that elect to exclude employees from emergency paid sick leave under the federal FFCRA health care provider exemption must provide the leave in California. As a best practice, all employers should comply with emergency paid sick leave under FFCRA.

September 17, 2020 – January 1, 2023 SB 1159 Report all employee COVID-19 cases to workers’ compensation carrier

Employers who learn that an employee has tested positive for COVID-19 must report specific information in writing to their claim’s administrator within three days. Read more here. Your workers comp carrier will provide more information to you.

July 1, 2020: New requirements for users of commercial credit program

A dental practice that offers patients the option of using a third-party credit program for treatment payment must comply with new requirements. A news article and updated California Commercial Credit Law resource are forthcoming.

July 1, 2020: Minimum wage increases across several cities effective

On July 1, 2020, minimum wage increases take effect in several California localities and require updated postings. Employers in Santa Rosa should be aware of a new increase and required notice effective July 1, 2020.

See Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Ordinances by City/County on cda.org

July 1, 2020: Paid family leave extended from six to eight weeks

The benefit available through California’s State Disability Service program provides wage replacement to workers who take time off from work for an ill child, spouse, parent, grandparent, sibling, or domestic partner, or to bond with a child within one year of birth or adoption. Employers should update practice policies to reflect the increase.

January 31, 2020: New version of the I-9 employment eligibility verification form

As of Jan. 31, 2020, employers should begin using the Form I-9. The new version is dated 10/21/2019 but will not become mandatory until May 1. 

January 1,2020: Expanded lactation accommodation requirements

All employers must provide a private lactation location other than a bathroom, near the employee's work area. This new law requires the location to have certain mandatory features, requires employers to have a written lactation accommodation policy, changes the ability to claim an exemption, and expands the available penalties.

January 1, 2020: New minimum wage requirements, increases for CA, some cities

The minimum wage for a large employer with 26 or more employees in California will increase from $12 per hour to $13 per hour, and employers with 25 or fewer employees will increase from $11 per hour to $12 per hour on Jan. 1, 2020. Some cities and counties have their own ordinances beyond what is required by state law, with more expected to follow. CDA provides a guide to minimum wage ordinances by city and county and employers are advised to check with their local jurisdictions to ensure they are in compliance.

January 1, 2020: Updated sedation/anesthesia consent form required

A dental practice that administers general anesthesia or deep or moderate sedation must use a written informed consent form that includes language specified in AB 1622 which the governor signed October 2019. Check out CDA's news article for more information, and access updated informed consent forms from the Practice Support Resource Library.

August 21, 2019: Hazardous pharmaceutical waste prohibited from disposal down the drain.

EPA’s newest rule requires healthcare facilities and other businesses that generate pharmaceutical hazardous waste to properly dispose of the waste. The first part of the rule, the prohibition on “sewering” hazardous pharmaceutical waste, is effective August 21. All nonhazardous pharmaceutical waste that are not controlled substances must be disposed as regulated medical waste. See Dental Office Waste Management Options.

July 1, 2019: New minimum wage requirements and increases for some cities

The following cities and county will increase their minimum wage on July 1: Alameda, Berkeley, Emeryville, Fremont, City of Los Angeles, County of Los Angeles (unincorporated areas only), Malibu, Milpitas, Pasadena, San Francisco, San Leandro and Santa Monica.

July 14, 2020: Install Amalgam Separators

Dental facilities without amalgam separators on June 14, 2017, with exceptions, must install an amalgam separator by this date and comply with documentation requirements. Separators must be compliant with either the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) American National Standard/American Dental Association (ADA) Specification 108 for Amalgam Separators (2009) With Technical Addendum (2011) or the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 11143 Standard (2008) or subsequent versions so long as that version requires amalgam separators to achieve at least a 95 percent removal efficiency.

March 12, 2019: Transition period to new controlled substances prescription forms

Prescribers of controlled substances may use 2018-compliant prescription forms as well as prescription forms with serial numbers through the end of 2020. SB 149 provides a transition period to new prescription forms that will be required starting January 1, 2021. The legislation, which became effective as soon as it was signed by the governor, resolves the unintended issues created when AB 1753 became effective Jan. 1, 2019. The effective date of AB 1753 left prescribers with very little time to order new forms and it was learned that the format of the serial number did not conform to industry standards. Prescribers in need of new controlled substance prescription forms should ensure they order from an approved printer listed on the DOJ website. New prescription forms with serial numbers formatted in the manner prescribed by SB 149 may be available by 2020. Consider moving to e-prescribing for controlled substances.

January 1, 2019: Enroll in or opt out of Medicare

Dentists who order or provide Medicare-covered items and services (clinical laboratory services, imaging services or durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics and supplies) will need to either enroll in Medicare using form CMS-855-I (PDF) or the shorter enrollment form CMS-855-O (PDF) or formally opt out of Medicare by Jan. 1, 2019. To assure one's status with Medicare and that patients' Medicare benefits do not lapse, dentists should allow sufficient time for processing whichever form is submitted. Learn more about enrollment requirements by visiting the ADA’s Facts and FAQ on Medicare.

January 1, 2019: Update standard mileage reimbursement rate for 2019 (released by Internal Revenue Service)

See the IRS’s press release. For business expense reimbursement, the 2019 rate is $0.58 per mile. That’s up $0.035 from last year. California employers need to reimburse such common expenses as work-related travel, dining expenses and mileage when an employee uses a personal car for work-related business. However, employees who can prove they spend more than $0.58 per mile to operate their personal vehicles for business use may be entitled to reimbursement of the actual expense. It’s up to the employees to prove their expenses, however.

January 1, 2019: Amendments to clarify ambiguities to salary history ban law

The new law amends the Labor Code to specify that an employer may now ask for an applicant’s salary expectations for the position being applied for, only external applicants (not current employees) and are entitled to request a pay scale for the position they are applying for, but only after completing an initial interview. The pay scale provided only needs to include salary and hourly wage ranges. AB 2282

January 1, 2019: Updated Lactation Accommodation location requirements

Section 1031 of the Labor Code has now been updated to specify that employers should provide a location other than a bathroom. Employers must make reasonable efforts to provide the employee the use of a room, other than a bathroom, in close proximity to the employees work area to express milk in private. Employers should update their employee policy to reflect the new
lactation accommodation requirements. Sample Employee Manual (Doc)

January 1, 2019: Implement new minimum wage increases

The minimum wage for a large employer with 26 or more employees in California will increase from $11 per hour to $12 per hour, and employers with 25 or fewer employees will increase from $10.50 per hour to $11 per hour on Jan. 1, 2019. Some cities and counties have their own ordinances beyond what is required by state law, with more expected to follow. CDA provides a guide to minimum wage ordinances by city and county and employers are advised to check with their local jurisdictions to ensure they are in compliance.

January 1, 2019: New infection control standard for procedures that expose dental pulp

When performing procedures on exposed dental pulp, water or other methods used for irrigation must be “sterile or contain recognized disinfecting or antibacterial properties.”

January 1, 2019: Prescriber obligation to prescribe and educate on naloxone use

As of Jan. 1, 2019, a prescriber must offer a patient a prescription for naloxone hydrochloride or other FDA-approved drugs for the complete or partial reversal of opioid depression when one or more of the following conditions are present:

  1. The prescription dosage for the patient is 90 or more morphine milligrams equivalent of an opioid medication per day. (See this CDC document on how to calculate MME.)
  2. Opioid medication is prescribed concurrently with a prescription for benzodiazepine.
  3. The patient presents with an increased risk for overdose, including a patient with a history of overdose, a patient with a history of substance use disorder or a patient at risk for returning to a high dose of opioid medication to which the patient is no longer tolerant.

Additionally, a prescriber must provide education to a patient, or the patient’s guardian if the patient is a minor, receiving a prescription per the above circumstance on overdose prevention and the use of naloxone hydrochloride or other FDA-approved drugs for the complete or partial reversal of opioid depression. AB 2760

January 1, 2019: Mandatory opioid prescription discussion with minor or minor’s parent

Beginning Jan. 1, 2019, a prescriber is required to discuss the following with a minor or the minor’s parent or guardian before issuing the first opioid prescription in a single course of treatment:

  1. The risks of addiction and overdose associated with the use of opioids.
  2. The increased risk of addiction to an opioid to an individual suffering from both mental and substance-abuse disorders.
  3. The danger of taking an opioid with benzodiazepine, alcohol or another central nervous system depressant.

A new informed consent form, Consent to Prescribe Opioid to a Minor, (Spanish version) has been developed and is available on the TDIC and CDA Practice Support websites.

January 1, 2019: Warning notice required on opioid container

SB 1109  requires a warning notice be prominently displayed on the label or container of an opioid dispensed to a patient for outpatient use. The notice must state: "Caution. Opioid. Risk of overdose and addiction." The law requires the notice be displayed "by means of a flag or other notification mechanism attached to the container."

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