General regulations

There are government regulations in place to promote safe and healthy working practices. Their exact interpretation is left to employers and employees. 

Working Conditions Act

The following general regulations in the Working Conditions Act are relevant:

  • Article 3(1) The employer must pursue a policy aimed at good working conditions.
  • Article 3(2) The employer must prevent risks and, if that is not possible, limit them.
  • Article 5 The employer assesses the risks and draws up an action plan.
  • Article 8 The employer provides information, instruction and training to staff.
  • Article 11 The employee is obliged to cooperate in the safe use of the conditions and to perform work in a safe manner.

Working Conditions Decree

The following articles of the Working Conditions Decree apply especially to infection prevention.

  • Article 4.84 Biological agents, micro-organisms and cell cultures. Description and classification into classes of risk.
  • Articles 4.85 - 86 Further risk assessment requirements.
  • Articles 4.87, 4.87a, 4.87b, 4.88, 4.89, 4.90, Exposure measures including measures regarding legionella, safety alerts and registration.
  • Article 4.91 Occupational health examination.
  • Articles 4.92 - 4.93 Provision of information to the works council.
  • Article 4.94 Notification of regulators.
  • Article 4.102, Special stipulations regarding training and instruction.
  • Articles 4.104, 4.105, 4.107, 4.108 - 4.109, Special categories of workers (young people and pregnant women).

European arrangements

European directives form the basis for legislation in the Netherlands. For biological agents there is the EC Directive 2000/54/EC 'Directive on the protection of workers from risks related to exposure to biological agents at work'. This Directive has been implemented in Dutch legislation in Section 9 of the Working Conditions Decree, Articles 4.84 to 4.102.