What changed in the Dutch Working Conditions Act as of 1 July 2017?
The new act pays more attention to prevention. It also strengthens the involvement of employers and employees and the role of the prevention officer, and improves the preconditions for action by the company doctor. As such, there is a greater focus on prevention, occupational diseases and work-related health complaints.
Below is an overview of the main changes in the new Dutch Working Conditions Act.
Walk-in surgery hours
Individual employees have the right go to the company doctor if they have questions about individual and personal work-related health issues. The working conditions surgery hours (or walk-in surgery hours/preventative surgery hours) already featured in our service provision. Under the new Dutch Working Conditions Act, you as an employer must also actively alert employees to this right. Your employee may request this surgery hour by calling ArboNed and making an appointment. This surgery is anonymous and you will not receive any feedback on it.
Free access to workplace
The company doctor has free access to the workplace.
Every employee has the right to consult a different company doctor if they are in doubt about the advice from their own company doctor; this is called a second opinion. From 1 April 2018, ArboNed uses the Landelijke Pool Bedrijfsartsen (national pool of company doctors) for second opinions.The second opinion will be given by a BIG-registered company doctor from this pool. The latest updated list can be found on www.bedrijfsartsensecondopinion.nl. This company doctor is not employed by or on behalf of ArboNed B.V.
Greater staff involvement
The employee representative body has a right of consent regarding the choice of prevention officer and their role in the organisation.
Prevention officer's role more clearly defined
The prevention officer has a more clearly defined role in the organisation.
Basic occupational health and safety services contract
The new Working Conditions Act stipulates that the employer and the occupational health and safety service provider enter into an agreement. This is called the 'basic contract'. It lays down the minimum terms of service. The agreements ArboNed has concluded with its customers largely meet the conditions set, but the new act requires a number of adjustments. These are related to the additional arrangements about our service provision. They have been incorporated into our terms of cooperation. ArboNed customers were personally informed about this in July 2017. With this addendum, your contract with ArboNed meets all new statutory requirements, on condition that you have coordinated this with your works council (WC) or employee representative body (ERB), as these terms of cooperation are subject to the right of consent of the WC or ERB. If there is no WC or ERB, you must coordinate with the employees in question. You can keep the signed copy of the terms of cooperation for your own records; it does not have to be returned to ArboNed.