Cypress Health trying to reduce work-related injuries
The Cypress Health Region took another step towards its ongoing commitment to safety by officially endorsing the Mission: Zero Partnership Agreement as developed by WorkSafe Saskatchewan.
This agreement emphasizes a common goal by organizations to reduce the number of work-related injuries and illnesses within the province.
By signing the Mission: Zero Partnership Agreement, CEO Beth Vachon is hoping to continue the region’s efforts in identifying proactive measures to reduce injuries before they occur and to assist others in considering the importance of injury prevention in their homes and communities.
“The concept of safety has been one of the region’s top priorities since the beginning of our organization and our staff identified it as the number one value statement within our strategic direction a number of years ago,” said Vachon. “Our staff are the number one asset that we have and we want to do everything that we possibly can to keep them safe while providing care to the people they serve. At the same time, the safety of our patients and families must always be considered in everything that we do.”
“Providing safe environments is a key ingredient to our desire to be a leader within the provincial health system,” added Vachon. “This formal step is another example of our dedication to safety and the recognition that we still have work to do.”
In his role as Director of Occupational and Public Health, Jeff Schwan sees the important role of injury and illness prevention every day of his work life. “Health care environments and workplaces have one of the highest rates of injury within our province and musculoskeletal incidents are the number one area of the body that is affected by those injuries,” stated Schwan. “Due to the many risks for injury that are present, we have to work collectively with our staff and other partners in the province to be proactive in what we do to identify these risks and take action to prevent them from causing injury to our staff and those we are serving.”
Schwan added that the region’s commitment to safety has been a long standing priority for all 1700 staff members, and that much effort is placed into programs and education that help to maintain safety as the number one priority. “The involvement of our staff in Occupational Health and Safety Committees is one of those essential ways that they help to identify proactive approaches to safety. Participation in the Accreditation Canada program is a great opportunity to assess our region’s preparedness against national safety standards in many areas affecting staff and patients.”
Several examples of the region’s efforts to keep safety as a continual focus include:
ongoing financial commitment to the purchase of safe lifting mechanisms to reduce the burden on staff members’ backs; provision of ongoing training and education to its staff in areas such as ‘transferring/lifting/repositioning’ (TLR); participation in national awareness weeks such as the ‘National STOP Clean Your Hands Day’ which
emphasize the importance of hand hygiene; and, ongoing attention to the provincially legislated Occupational Health and Safety Act and Public Health Act.
Copies of the signed agreement will be prominently displayed in all of the region’s facilities and offices to serve as a continual reminder of the commitment to injury and illness prevention. Additional information on the Mission Zero initiative and other provincial safety mechanisms can be found by visiting www.worksafe.ca.
WorkSafe Saskatchewan provides information that Saskatchewan’s unintentional injury rates are among the highest in Canada. Among their statistics:
40% of emergency room visits are from preventable injuries;
Of 158,000 injuries per year, 40,000 of these occur in Saskatchewan workplaces
and the remainder occur to children, seniors, or working class Saskatchewan
people after work;
9,800 people are hospitalized every year in the province from unintentional
injuries which is 26 people per day. Provincial rate is twice the national average.
3,500 people suffer a permanent disability every year, or 10 people every day.
via SW Sask News – Prairie Post – Prairie Post http://www.prairiepost.com/news/sw-sask/item/4211-cypress-health-trying-to-reduce-work-related-injuries.html