St. Patrick’s College London
HND Health and Social Care Management
HEALTH AND SAFETY IN HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE WORKPLACE
This essay is about how health and safety is applied in health and social care in order to protect everyone in health and social care environment, and it will also examine the importance of health and safety policy and risk assessment in workplace. Health and Safety at work etc Act 1974 is concern with maintaining and improving the physical and mental well-being of employees at work and protecting anyone else who may be adversely affected. Care homes are therefore subject to the provision of health and safety policy, employers and employees have defined duties to ensure the health and safety of themselves, service users, visitors and contractors (HSE, 2001). LO1
In health and social care organisation, there are different systems put in place for communicating information e.g. risk assessment, infection control system, machinery system, first aid system, environmental control system, medication control system and training. Employers must have a health and safety poster as a sign of communicating health and safety at workplace, the fire exit signs must be visible to everyone in case of emergency, and is another way of communicating health and safety and there should be signs of warning, caution, wet floor, infection bin etc (Shranks 2012). A risk assessment is the investigation and identification of the likelihood of an undesired outcome or incident happening. Risk is anything that is likely to cause hazard or have the probability to cause harm, while hazard is anything that have the potential of causing harm(Nolan, 2009). In a workplace, in other to carry out risk assessment, we must first identify the hazard, decide who might be harm and how, evaluate the risk and decide on precautions, record findings and implement them. Review your assessment and update if necessary every month if the risk is high and every three to six months if the risk is low. Employers and directors of the workforce are under a statutory duty under the health and safety at work Act (1974) to prepare and keep revised a written statement of health and safety policy, if the organisation employ five or more employees(Tullett, 1996). Health and Safety Policy template provides a framework for recording how health and safety issues are managed within health organisation. All employers have a duty of care to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all employees and must assess risks at work. The policies are reviewed when there is change of management in an organisation, when there is changes in government legislature and when an accident happened at workplace (Collins, 2009).
Responsibility is a duty or obligation to satisfactorily perform or complete a task. It is the responsibilities of the employers to write a health and safety policy statement, carry out risk assessment to identify risks and how they are managed, provide free health and safety training, ensure appropriate warning signs are provide, provide free personal protective equipment (PPE) and protect the health, safety and welfare of employees. The manager should appoint and train a first aid representative, fire safety representative, infection control representative etc in case there is an emergency at the workplace. Employers must carry out risk assessment, have a first aid box under the health and safety (First Aid) regulations 1981 and the minimum requirement for any workplace is that at all times there should be at least one first aid appointed person who will take charge if there is an emergency, ensure that work equipments are properly maintain, ensure that plants and machinery are safe and safe systems are set and followed, and ensure that staffs are trained on how to use equipment and the equipment must be checked...
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