There are risks that come with working in a hospital anytime, but especially now during COVID-19, there are even more things to consider. In a hospital, there are roles including nurses, doctors, office staff, cafeteria workers, and many more. There are elements to hospital safety that are even more important now than ever to keeping staff healthy.
How-to Practice Hospital Safety: Staying Safe at Work
While working in a hospital, you may have to lift heavy equipment or even people. A key to hospital safety is to make sure you do not strain while lifting. Remember to bend with your knees and not with your back. There is equipment, such as a mechanical lift or a slide board, that is meant to help you be able to pick up or move patients. This is something that you should request to have if you do not have access to this, and should certainly utilize.
Grab bars and trapezes should be installed near beds, toilets and showers so that patients are able to help assist themselves. Having the patient use this equipment can help save you from getting hurt. Hospitals should train employees on how to use this equipment. The training should also include also how to lift properly in the event that you have to manually lift something.
Needles and Sharps
Another critical thing in hospital safety is being smart and safe around needles and sharps. A sharp or needle-stick injury
could be very dangerous. Not only can these objects cut you, you could also potentially pick up an infectious disease (ID). For example, if a needle was just used on a patient with an ID, and then you get stuck with it, you are at risk of contracting the ID also.
To combat this, you need to slow down and pay attention. Rushing and hurrying opens up the possibility for injury. There are also guards and shields that can protect a healthcare worker when removing a needle from a syringe.
Personal Protective Equipment
Personal protective equipment, or PPE, are things that protect workers from possible exposure to harmful things. Gloves, masks, and gowns are typical PPE for healthcare workers
. However, since Covid-19 started, N95 masks have become the gold standard for hospital safety. Face shields are also important for protecting hospital staff as well. Employers should provide the appropriate PPE to employees in order to help increase their safety. Employers should hold training sessions on how to properly use the PPE, and employees should make sure they are properly wearing them.
There are many things that hospital staff can do in order to stay safe at work. By making sure to lift properly, being careful with sharp objects and needles, and by wearing proper PPE, hospital staff will be able to stay safer at work.