Healthcare is an industry that requires specific and meticulous safety measures even at the best of times. Any mistakes with such measures mean placing the staff as well as the patients at a health risk.
Any healthcare facility in North Carolina needs to follow certain safety procedures to assure the safety of the staff. The health workers also have to be responsible enough to follow these safety precautions. Here are some of the safety measures that staff should take in a healthcare facility:
Healthcare facilities need to place training structures for every health worker. The training platforms should focus on various areas that may be a danger to the healthcare workers if not initially guided.
As technology becomes more advanced, so does the equipment that is used on patients. Healthcare workers need to be trained on how to handle the equipment in a way that doesn’t harm themselves or the patients.
Another example is the handling of chemicals. Whether these are for cleaning the space or used as a part of a procedure, all chemicals need to be handled with caution. Healthcare workers need to have gone through training so that they don’t inhale the chemicals or spill on themselves, which can have dangerous consequences.
In the case that training procedures aren’t adhered to by a healthcare facility in North Carolina, healthcare workers have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit. Attorneys such as Johnson & Groninger have the expertise needed to get workers the compensation they deserve for a personal injury on the job.
- Protective Wear
Every healthcare facility in North Carolina needs to provide protective wear for every staff member. The workers have to then take it upon themselves to always wear the gear when required. Protective wear gears include gloves, scrubs, head-gear, face-shields, masks, and shoe covers.
Part of the training should include a demonstration of how to properly use the protective gear after they have been provided to employees. Health workers need to have the gear easily accessible and should report any worn out items which should be immediately attended to upon reporting.
- Hygiene Care
Healthcare workers need to practice meticulous hygiene when in a healthcare facility. Personal hygiene practices of a healthcare worker include;
- Cutting of nails to avoid trapping dirt and germs. Long nails may also make the patient feel uncomfortable when being handled.
- The covering of hair to avoid shedding while operating on a patient, for example.
- Hand washing before and after attending to a patient to avoid transmission of germs and chemicals.
- Covering of mouth and nose with a mask.
- Thorough cleaning of all surfaces
There should be a protocol regarding hygiene maintenance in place to be followed that is made available to each staff member.
The general maintenance of the building needs to be a priority to ensure safety. For instance, a leaking roof can cause injuries due to slipping and falling. It can also be a fire hazard if rain gets into electrical wiring in the ceilings and walls. This may lead to the healthcare worker and patient to get injured which can result in lawsuits from both parties.
All electrical elements should be functioning for the services to be efficiently provided. A dim room, for example, makes it difficult for the healthcare workers to analyse test results or monitor devices tracking patient vitals.
- Reporting of Hazards
Safety is every staff member’s responsibility. Once an employee notices or experiences a hazardous situation, they should report the matter immediately. There must be a set protocol provided for reporting matters such as malfunctioning gadgets, unclean spaces, and a lack of protective gear, for example. Once such factors have been flagged by staff members, it is then the responsibility of the facility to make sure that these are immediately rectified.
- Reasonable Working Hours
Every healthcare facility in North Carolina must implement reasonable working hours for each health care worker. Reasonable working hours are such that the worker doesn’t burn out. Over-exertion of workers may result in accident-based fatigue, a decline in mental health, and a lack of motivation, all of which compromises the quality service provided.
In situations where working hours have to be prolonged, each facility should assess how best to offer support to the healthcare workers. This can be in the form of longer recess periods, extended days off, or pairing where initially one was working alone.
- Wellness Support Systems
Mental and emotional aspects of healthcare workers are seemingly overlooked when discussing safety at the workplace. These dynamics are, however, as equally important as physical safety. Healthcare workers witness some of the most traumatising cases in patients. They are taught how to professionally handle these, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t get affected by some cases.
Healthcare workers should have facilities available that encourage mental and emotional safety. This can be in the form of counsellors or therapists who have the expertise in training healthcare workers how to cope with traumatizing scenarios. Post-trauma services can also be included to make sure that once a worker feels as if they aren’t coping, they quickly get the assistance required. When health care workers are mentally distracted, they become a risk to themselves as well as patients.
Safety measures for healthcare staff and patients in a North Carolina facility need to be made a priority. If a facility neglects to put these in place, it risks having workers file a lawsuit. It is also the workers’ responsibility to make sure that they follow the safety precautions that are placed by the facility.
Some of the precautionary measures include a provision of extensive training regarding the use of healthcare equipment. Protective gear needs to always be provided and worn. Hygiene needs to be implemented both by employers and healthcare workers.
General maintenance must always be carried out and workers need to also play their part by reporting any hazards. The working hours ascribed to healthcare workers should be reasonable and encourage wellness. There should also be a system in place that protects mental and emotional health through counselling.