Occupational Safety and Health
Workplace injuries are a significant risk for any business, and they can lead to costly medical bills, lost productivity, and increased insurance premiums. There are numerous strategies employers can implement to reduce the number of injuries in their workplace. Consider the following ideas:
- Examine your workplace for ways to reduce the chance of injury. For example, consider changing the way materials, parts and products are transported to relieve the burden on employees. You could also consider altering the layout of workstations to be more ergonomic.
- Promote healthy lifestyles, including physical activity and weight management. Improving physical health and maintaining a healthy weight can reduce pain for individuals with arthritis and back problems, and can help employees prevent further injury.
- Provide training to management and employees regarding risks for workplace injuries, including how to: reduce and avoid injuries; recognize potential workplace risks and how to mitigate those risks; and recognize a potential injury and know when to seek medical evaluation
- Make administrative changes to reduce the risk of injuries. These may include reducing shift length, limiting overtime, scheduling more breaks for rest and recovery, rotating workers through jobs that are physically taxing, and instituting pre-shift stretching sessions.
- Develop policies that support a corporate culture of good health, safety and injury management, such as: required use of personal protective equipment, with training on how to properly use it; ergonomic workplace initiatives; workplace safety programs; disability management policies; and return-to-work programs
- Encourage early reporting by employees, and prompt evaluation by health care providers. Many workplaces stress early reporting for injuries, but employees may understand that to mean only sudden injuries, like accidents, slips, and falls.
- Educate employees on workers’ compensation and disability benefits, including protections and accommodations offered by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
A safe workplace provides numerous positive benefits for workers, as well as for their families, friends, businesses, and their community. Contact a member of ABIS’ risk management team for assistance with your workplace safety program.
Source: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention