Risk management is a vital part of any company, but the details of the plan differ depending on the composition of the business and the industry itself. Therefore, each specific organization must determine what hazards are relevant, and that can be accomplished by asking the right questions.
In the healthcare industry, for example, employees face a number of potential risks unique to the profession. Not only do they have common safety issues, like slips, trips and falls, but they also encounter infectious diseases on a regular basis. To ensure that a risk management plan is comprehensive given these hazards, here are a few tips for those involved in healthcare:
Determine that risks are being addressed properly
Simply having a risk management plan in place doesn't meant that employees are protected. In fact, it is entirely possible that problems are slipping through the cracks for a variety of reasons. James DeLoach, managing director at Texas-based consulting firm Protiviti Inc., recently spoke with Business Insurance about how to ensure this isn't the case.
For starters, DeLoach explained that an organization's board members must be looking into a few key areas. The first is whether or not the risk profile accurately reflects the hazards in the company. The board must get everyone in the firm on the same page. If the CEO has a risk appetite that is different than other top executives, it could create problems providing a safe, secure workplace.
Next, DeLoach noted that improvements to risk management must be constant. It is never a bad time to be upgrading and getting better.
"The board should be focused on making sure your lines of defense are strong," he told Business Insurance.
Identify the risks in healthcare
When drafting a new version of a risk management plan, it can help to outline the potential hazards facing employees. This is especially important in healthcare, as there are many that could be relevant.
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration outlines many of the threats affecting this industry on a daily basis. Your company can address these issues by asking a few key questions, including:
Answers to all of these, and more, must be detailed in a risk management plan. This will help workers understand how they can protect themselves on the job. OSHA reported that healthcare workers have an incredibly high injury rate, with nursing aides, orderlies and attendants the most susceptible to musculoskeletal disorders over the past several years. No matter the risk, each employer should ensure that strategies exist to limit problems.