Train your employees with OSHA’s hazard game

By: August 25th, 2015 Email This Post Print This Post

I don’t know many employers that allow workers to play video games on the job but OSHA just came up with one that just might make your facility safer.

Officially called the “Hazard Identification Training Tool,” the game is billed as an interactive game that allows the user to walk his way through a virtual workplace; you can pick your choice of emergency room, construction site, or manufacturing.

Sound effects make the experience real, and the idea is that the user clicks on the areas that they see potential hazards popping up. An on-screen explanation tells them what the danger is, such as sharp edges on a cart, and gives them points for picking the right ones.

I wouldn’t suggest letting them do this while they are working with patients, but it’s definitely a tool worth adding to your training arsenal that they could easily do while on a lunch break. It’s kind of addicting once you get into it, and that will translate to safer employees who care about what they are doing.

Check out the interactive game here.

Give your facility’s safety a fresh look with our free forms!

By: August 21st, 2015 Email This Post Print This Post

As we get closer to September, it’s a good time for many people to reassess some things in their life and get a fresh start on some things.

We suggest you do the same thing with the status of safety and security in your facility. Start with an annual facility review to make sure everything is where it should be and that your employees are trained properly, and you can make a plan to improve from there.

Download our free Annual Facility Review Checklist here, and get started today making sure your healthcare facility is as safe as it can be!

Also, look forward to our weekly “Free Form Fridays” on the OSHA Healthcare Advisor blog, and be sure to check out our many free tools and checklists on our Tools page.

Join our healthcare safety book review group!

By: August 14th, 2015 Email This Post Print This Post

HCPro is seeking enthusiastic patient safety and quality professionals to join an ad-hoc group interested in reading and reviewing prepublication drafts of books and training materials in your areas of interest and expertise.

Our editors will send you periodic emails listing upcoming projects available for outside review. If you’re interested, just let us know. We’ll send reviewing guidelines and give you an idea of our timeframe. If it works for you, we’ll send the draft chapters as they’re available, and a printed copy of the book when it’s complete. In addition, you will be recognized as a reviewer inside the printed book.

Please have a minimum of five years of healthcare safety/quality experience and be in an educational, supervisory, or leadership role within your organization.

For more information or to sign up as a reviewer, please send an email including your areas of interest and expertise to John Palmer at jpalmer@hcpro.com.

Confused about GHS? Join the club

By: July 31st, 2015 Email This Post Print This Post

I’ve been getting a lot of customer e-mail lately about the new OSHA GHS requirements, and what constitutes “compliance.”

Like good boys and girls, you the safety folks have been doing the right thing, it seems, by making sure your employees are trained and calling the manufacturers of the nasty chemicals in your facility to try to get your updated SDS sheets, like OSHA wants you to.

The problem lies in some manufacturers, who either haven’t gotten the memo, or just are not as diligent.

Confusing? Frustrating?  We know, and so does OSHA.

I just sat through a session at the American Society of Healthcare Engineers (ASHE) conference about this and listened to some SDS experts try to explain this. The bottom line is that yes, manufacturers were technically supposed to be working with the new labels as of June 1. However, OSHA decided to give them a transitional period until December 1 to ship and distribute any old inventory with the old labels.

The problem is this … even if you have a manufacturer of “Methyl-Ethyl Kill You Now” who is complying with the new OSHA GHS, there may be an ingredient in that whose manufacturer has not complied yet. So that holds everybody up. Hence the grace period.

So what does this mean for you, and for clinics?

Basically, you need to show that you are in compliance and that you are doing the best you can. At this point, and up until June 2016, as long as workplaces have an MSDS or an SDS for every chemical they stock, they are considered in compliance. That’s why employees need to be trained on both systems.

As for manufacturers, they don’t yet have their act together. So the workplaces need to do their diligence, and to do something. They cannot sit on their duffs and wait for the manufacturer to send the SDS. They need to be able to show an inspector that they are trying something. Document phone calls, emails, keep a folder with any correspondence, etc. As long as they are making a good faith effort, OSHA will be OK with it.

After June 2016, though, all bets are off. Everyone must comply with the new system.

Join HCPro for August focus groups!

By: July 29th, 2015 Email This Post Print This Post

Hi folks –

By now you know that I often ask you for your opinion and expertise to help me write stories for our safety newsletters, Briefings on Hospital Safety and Medical Environment Update. Now, I’d like to ask you to help me make your job easier to do.

For some time, we have been working on building a new Web portal that will be designed around your needs as a safety professional. The goal is to develop a place where you can go every single day to get all of the information and tools you need to keep up with what the regulators are doing, help keep your facility in compliance, and to make your workplace a safer one.

During the month of August, I will be conducting a series of focus groups, and I want as many of you as possible to participate. This will be your chance to tell me what you want in an online web portal.  I want to know where you are now getting your information, if not us, and why?

Do you want more tools, checklists, and forms? More news and analysis? A way to connect with your peers? And how do you want that information? Do you like things you can print out, or do you want to view it on a tablet?

All of this information will help us design a better web experience around you, the user. Some of you may be familiar with our current online presence at www.hospitalsafetycenter.com.​ Please take a good look and let us know what we are doing right, and what is lacking or what needs updating, and what we can do to make it better.

Also, please let me know your availability and we will design these one-hour focus groups around your schedule. My goal is to get as much information as we can by September so we can get started on building our future portal for you.

Feel free to reach out to me at jpalmer@hcpro.com.

As always, I thank you for your time, as I know you are very busy. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

John Palmer

Managing Editor, Safety

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