The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently launched a new educational Web resource which has extensive materials to help hospitals prevent worker injuries, assess workplace safety needs, enhance safe patient handling programs, and implement safety and health management systems. The materials include fact books, self-assessments and best practice guides. The website’s materials on safe patient handling are designed to address the most common type of injuries hospital workers face, and hospitals can use these resources to protect their workers, improve patient safety and reduce costs.
Among the many serious hazards that hospitals workers face are exposure to chemicals and hazardous drugs, exposure to infectious diseases and needlesticks, lifting and moving patients, and workplace violence. According to Dr. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, the materials at the Website are based upon lessons learned from high-performing hospitals that have implemented best practices to reduce workplace injuries while also improving patient safety.