The COVID-19 global pandemic affected every industry in some way. However, the people who work in the healthcare industry experienced something unique. While everyone else was forced to stay at home, they continued to put their lives at risk to provide care for others.
Therefore, it’s critical for medical facilities to find ways to protect their healthcare workers and keep them safe.
This might include personal protective equipment (PPE), sterilization of equipment, essential training for proper use of equipment, and implementing standard operating procedures (SOPs).
We’ll also look into some additional ways you can keep healthcare workers safe in your medical facility.
Have The Necessary Equipment
For healthcare workers to do their jobs safely, they need the proper tools. PPE, or personal protective equipment, protects nurses and doctors from becoming infected or infecting others. You can also help to alleviate workplace injuries or harmful exposures by providing updated, functioning equipment.
But PPE isn’t the only tool healthcare workers need. Other types of equipment, such as custom containers, for example, provide safe transportation and storage for valuable and sensitive instruments, components, and equipment.
Sterilization Of The Facility
In the medical field, the importance of having a sterile environment is critical to the recovery and survival of patients. It’s equally as important to protect healthcare workers as well.
From medical equipment to hospital rooms, medical facilities must take the necessary precautions to sterilize the environment to reduce the risk of infections, viruses, and other bacteria.
Create and Implement Safety Policies
Establishing a safe environment means providing policies and SOPs for each employee to follow. These policies should provide a distinct link between occupational health and safety to preventive control programs.
Incorporate training and educational programs to coincide with your policies. These should be completed every year to sharpen their skills, refresh their education, and implement any new policies that need to go into effect.
Encourage Healthcare Workers to File Incident Reports
You can’t fix what you don’t know. Having a safe and open dialogue with your employees is a great asset for every medical facility.
Encouraging healthcare workers to document issues, keep records, and file incident reports will give you the ability to update your policies and training as needed.
For instance, if there is a situation where workplace violence has occurred to one of your healthcare workers, they need to know how to properly record and file the situation. Simplify your reporting process and learn from recurring incidents that happen in your facility.
Keeping your employees safe also includes their mental well-being. Because there is a shortage of nurses across the United States, these employees are feeling overworked and unable to provide quality care to their patients. The more burned out someone feels, the more of a toll their mental health will take.
Healthcare workers, in general, work extremely long hours that aren’t your typical 9-to-5. It’s important to optimize the schedule by potentially shortening shift hours or changing the nurse-to-patient ratios.
Creating a safe and healthy work environment in a medical facility may seem like one of the most difficult places to do so. However, as medical professionals, you know the extent of harm that could take place if not properly addressed.
Most importantly, adhere to safety policies and SOPs with the necessary training. Keep them updated frequently and have your staff certified annually. The more a person is educated, the better they’ll be to handle the situation at hand.