The Health Care Health and Safety Association continues to provide leadership in protecting health care

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In the continuing effort to meet the needs of the health care sector, the Health Care Health and Safety Association is pleased to announce the launch of several leading edge products to support the prevention and reduction of workplace accidents, injuries and occupational disease.

Personal protective equipment is raised to a new level The groundbreaking video, Don of a New Day, shot on location at Peterborough Regional Health Centre and North York General Hospital, has been created in response to SARS and the more complex level of personal protective equipment (PPE) required in acute care hospitals. To address the challenge faced by hospitals to implement the safe and effective use of more protective PPE, the Health Care Health and Safety Association has created a sector specific training video. The video has applications for all health professionals. “I feel honoured to have been part of the production of this video. It will be an excellent educational resource for all health care workers dealing with the realities of new and emerging infectious diseases,” states Margaret Jay, Coordinator Infection Control, Peterborough Regional Health Centre.This comprehensive resource covers the basic PPE required for contact, droplet and airborne spread infectious diseases. In addition, the video provides step-by-step guidance in the donning and removal of more protective PPE, such as personal protective systems and powered air-purifying respirators that may be required for outbreak management in the event of new and emerging infectious diseases. It is divided into modules to accommodate the specific training needs of an organization. It will be available in DVD and VHS.

Protecting health-care workers from infectious diseasesThis new self-assessment tool was developed to assist health-care organizations to identify health and safety strengths and to provide opportunities for the enhancement of their occupational health and safety related infection control program. The goal of this tool is to protect health-care workers from the transmission of infectious diseases in the workplace. The assessment process promotes an organizational multidisciplinary approach involving infection control and occupational health professionals, and the joint health and safety committee.The HCHSA project team pulled together a team of experts from acute care, long-term care, and government and labour unions as well as partner associations such as the Ontario Hospital Association to provide valuable input on the content of the document.

Guiding the way with client mechanical liftsThis new resource, A Planning Guide for the Implementation of Client Mechanical Lifts, was designed to help joint health and safety committees effectively select and implement appropriate client mechanical lift equipment and support the development of a comprehensive client handling program. It takes the user from the development of a program, through the decisions made prior to purchasing, to the implementation issues to be considered prior to initiating the use of the equipment.The Health Care Health and Safety Association encourages the use of this tool as an integral component of a Client Safe Handling program. This planning guide should also help health-care organizations address the legislated requirements under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act and establish best practices in occupational health and safety.The HCHSA project team brought together a team of experts from acute care, long-term care, and government and labour unions to provide valuable input into the content of the document as well as manufacturers of client mechanical lifts to provide expertise on the intricacies of these products.The Health Care Health and Safety Association supports the prevention and reduction of workplace accidents, injuries and occupational disease in the Ontario health-care sector. We assist organizations to adopt practices and approaches that result in continuous reductions in accident and injuries and the associated costs. We achieve our mandate by offering a broad range of projects and services. Visit our website – www.hchsa.on.ca to view our extensive list of products and services and to find the health and safety consultant for your area who is able to help you with all your health and safety needs.

Health care or community care organizations that pay premiums to the WSIB are automatically member clients of HCHSA. Members can access the unique health care specific services we offer. The organization is a “designated entity” under the Workplace Safety & Insurance Act. Our services are based on the principle identified in the Ontario Ministry of Labour’s paper, Preventing Illness and Injury – A Better Health & Safety System for Ontario Workplaces (January 1998).