Hospital and Aged Care

industry1Here in Australia, we have enviable medical and aged care facilities, staffed by caring and dedicated people whose vision is to provide excellent care whilst treating their patients and the aged with respect and dignity and at the same time recognising and respecting the cultural diversities of those they care for.
Over the last few years we have seen a significant increase in the number of cases of “occupational violence” (verbal and physical) being directed at medical, nursing and support staff within these industries. Often this socially intolerable behaviour is caused by drugs, alcohol, fear, pain and frustration, or people with mental health problems, not only by the ‘patients’ but members of the patient’s family or friends.
Verbal and physical violence and the resulting consequences have been so prevalent that both State and Federal Governments have passed laws against this type of behaviour; particularly toward Police and Medical staff.
In My Safety Consultants interactions with the health and aged care industry, we have recognised that to manage these situations requires a fine balance between the socially expected and moral need to treat patients with dignity, respect and professionalism without putting the lives of the patients or others at risk, and the WHS legislative duty of care placed on the Industry to protect workers from physically and verbally violent situations at the workplace.
Whilst by now the health and care Industry have documented processes and level of training for staff to deal with escalating situations of violence, we have to ask how well is the procedure or process working? As well as having a good understanding of the hazards and risks associated with your Industry, we at My Safety Consultants may be able to review such systems and ask ‘what if this occurred’ to provide opportunities for continuously improving management of occupational violence or any other work health and safety issues. We can also assist to develop more realistic risk assessments; and boost your current control measures. We are only an email or phone call away.

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