Every workplace has its safety risks that put employees in danger of becoming
injured. Employers are expected to make reasonable efforts to make the
workplace safe for their employees. When an on-the-job injury occurs,
an employee may be entitled to
workers' compensation benefits.
Readers in Pennsylvania most likely realize that employers put in differing
amounts of effort to make the workplace a safe environment for their employees.
Although those that do not maintain a safe workplace are the ones that
most often make the news, there are some that are going above and beyond
to decrease the number of injured workers.
A good example is Excela Health. It may come as a surprise to some that
it is difficult to keep workers safe in a hospital or health care environment,
but Excela has taken numerous steps to improve the safety of their workplace.
Some examples include the following:
- Ice alert signs posted at major entrances turn blue and flash when temperatures
drop to freezing;
- Approximately 25 feet of absorbent carpet at entrances to soak up the moisture
from wet shoes;
- Plastic umbrella covers at entrances; and
- Absorbent mats for spills are readily available.
While the above are all amazing actions, the main concern in the health
care industry is injury caused by blood and other bodily fluids. Excela
Health has tried to conquer these injuries by implementing the use of
safer syringes that allow nurses to cover the sharp point of the needle
immediately after the injection.
In 2008, Excela Health had 233 injuries that had to be reported to OSHA.
This number improved to just 68 last year. They are working toward zero,
but it is important to keep in mind that accidents happen, and employees
are still likely to be injured. If an employee is injured, it is important
for them to explore their options to receive workers' compensation
benefits as soon as possible after the occurrence of the injury.
Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "Excela worker safety efforts paying off but unfinished," Steve Twedt, Nov. 25, 2012