Slips, trips and falls are a serious safety risk for many businesses in a variety of industries.
The Healthcare industry is often at more risk than many industries for a variety of reasons. Think of the types of healthcare facilities that are open to a high risk of slips, trips, or falls:
- Elder Care Facilities – Nursing Home, Assisted Living, Senior Care, Continuous Care Retirement Communities
- Medical Office Buildings – with multiple practices located within
- Private Medical Practices
- Surgery Centers
- Physical Therapy | Rehab Centers
Some characteristics unique to the healthcare community include:
- High volume of patients, visitors and staff onsite often coming or going
- Often moving quickly to react to emergency situations
- Fatigue due to night shifts and double shifts
- Young | Middle | Elderly populations on site
- Hours of operation are often 24/7/365
- Already sick (often chronic) or injured parties coming and going
Whether positive or negative, slips, trips and falls are impacting your Total Cost of Risk
directly and indirectly today. Direct Costs can come in the form of increased workers’ compensation and general liability premiums, deductibles | self-insured retentions, or an Increased Experience Modification Factor. Indirect costs typically have a higher dollar amount associated with them and include: lost productivity, overtime, negative cultural impact, increased administrative burden, increased training costs, injured staff, etc…
It is our belief that every person, whether employee, patient or customer, who walks in your door should leave in as good or better condition as they came. Lost in the discussion above is the cost to the employee or injured party. Slips, trips and falls are responsible for serious injuries, reduced compensation, narcotic additions, unnecessary out of pocket costs, and pain.
Whenever I have a speaking engagement regarding this topic, I ask the staff, “How many of you have friends or even family here today.” Almost every hand in the room goes up. Then I ask, “Would you care if that person were injured or got sick?” Every hand goes up. Lastly, I ask “Do you feel it is ok to let someone get injured or hurt when we could have prevented it?” This time, no hands go up. This is the philosophy each business can and needs to have in order to stop staff, visitors, and patients | customers from being injured at all costs. The first way to manage risk is through prevention. Most slips, trips and falls can be prevented.