The chances of a healthcare worker falling prey to a musculoskeletal disorder on the job are 7 times higher than any other profession.
Other high injury rates include: needlesticks, violence in the workplace, and slips, trips, and falls. Injuries and illnesses are costly, and they mean valuable team members cannot attend to the needs of the patients and clients of your facilities. Often, individuals who experience injuries in the workplace will require at least a week away from work, and 25% may require up to one month away from work (Professional Safety, October 2013).
The injuries that healthcare workers encountered in 2011 led to $13bn in expenses between treating the injury and lost work days associated with the injury (Professional Safety, October 2013). Clearly, there are high costs associated with injuries.
How can employers address the safety issues that confront our healthcare workers on a daily basis and impact the care for patients while keeping the financial impact of injuries at bay? The simple answer is implementing an Injury and Illness Prevention Program or Safety and Health Program. While not required in all states, having an IIPP is a known best practice because it gets at the heart of the situations that cause injuries and illnesses and requires the implementation of plans and procedures for prevention.
OSHA advocates 3 key implementation areas for a successful Injury and Illness Prevention Program:
1. Management Leadership
- Establish the goals and put forth the actions to establish a safer workplace
- Designate the team members to implement the actions
- Provide the tools and resources to support the plan
2. Worker Participation
- Consult with workers and involve them throughout the process
- Involve workers in inspections and investigations
- Encourage workers to report concerns
- Protect the rights of workers
3. Hazard Identification and Assessment
- Identify, Assess, and Document workplace hazards
- Investigate injuries and illnesses
- Inform workers of the hazards in the workplace
The Steri•SafeSM OSHA Compliance Program provides a complete, high quality and personalized Injury and Illness Prevention Program that can be implemented to prevent costly injuries or illnesses from impacting your facility. Talk to us today to find out how the Steri•SafeSM OSHA Compliance Program leads to practice management excellence.