Having a healthy and safe environment is what every employer and employee is aiming for. However, accidents at work that may result in injuries inevitably happen, especially if there aren’t efforts to make the workplace safe.
6 Important Things to Do If Your Employee Gets Injured at Work
If an employee gets injured while performing their tasks at work, it becomes the sole responsibility of the employer to make things right. Knowing how to deal with an injured employee is critical for a business.
As they say, employees are the lifeblood of any company, that’s why every employer must protect them at all cost.
Since no one knows when an accident will happen, the employer must always be ready and equipped with knowledge on how to deal with the situation.
To serve as a guide if an employee gets injured at work, here are some of the things that an employer must do:
1. Respond Immediately After Injury
As soon as an accident or injury happens, the main priority is to ensure the safety of the person involved and the welfare of other employees. The injured worker must be moved away from the area and make sure that no other worker is hurt.
Assess the situation by knowing what caused the accident and the severity of the injury. Minor burns, cuts, and scrapes can be attended to through first aid response, but more severe cases that may involve head or spinal trauma need emergency medical services by professionals.
When you respond to an emergency, it’s important to take note of important details. You may need to take pictures of the scene or gather witness testimonies.
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These pieces of information can be helpful if the person who’s injured wants to get insurance or to file a case. Even though it’s just a minor accident, it’s still best to have some documentation because it can be used when the safety protocols in the workplace will be updated.
2. Be Prepared
Workplace accidents are unavoidable that’s why it’s important to have quick response strategies to somehow lessen the severity of the injury so it won’t end up costing your business more. By developing risk and response plans for various accident types, the employees will feel that they’re safe at work.
There should be regular safety seminars educating both employers and employees, so if in case an untoward incident happens, they know what to do.
Apart from keeping first-aid supplies, it’s also ideal to let each employee undergo first aid training so they’ll be equipped with knowledge on how to perform immediate assistance when one of their colleagues gets injured.
Keeping a safe workplace environment is quite hard to maintain, especially that everyone’s focus is on fulfilling their duties. That’s why it’s important to assign a safety officer that’ll ensure that safety protocols are always followed.
3. Be Knowledgeable When An Injury Becomes A Lawsuit
As an employer, it’s important to know the necessary steps that you need to take when your injured employee sues the company.
All the information gathered when the incident happens must be presented to the attorneys or claim adjusters to determine the company’s liabilities to the accident.
In most cases, it’s the employer’s liability to pay for medical expenses and other damages if the accident happened during working hours at the workplace.
For severe cases, like spinal injuries, websites such as https://www.sadakafirm.com/spinal-cord-injury-lawyer/ can help. When there’s a claim already filed, it’s important to negotiate with the other party to come up with the best resolution.
4. Help Your Employee Get Medical Care
One part of the risk and response plan is securing medical or life insurance for each and every employee. If you offer medical care benefits to your employees, it’s an indication that you care for their wellness.
Investing in a medical care plan for your employees also helps your company save money, especially in paying for medical expenses. The medical expenses are discounted if there’s already medical care in place.
If the company has its own insurance provider, it’s the employer’s responsibility to assist in filing a claim. To speed up the claim process, the employer will ensure that there’s open communication among the attending physician, claims adjustor, and the insurance agent.
Claiming insurance is considered as one of the most stressful processes, that’s why the employer’s support along the way is much needed to lessen the worries of the injured employee.
5. Establish A Return-To-Work Program
In some cases, even though the employee has already been discharged from the hospital, they’re still in the recovery state, so they aren’t physically ready to report for work yet.
They may need to take weeks or even months off the job. The longer they miss work, there’s possibility that their efficiency and proficiency will be affected.
As part of the return-to-work program, there should be a refresher or training for the returning employee for a smooth transition and to ensure their productivity.
The return-to-work program aims to preserve the employee’s confidence towards work.
This also serves as a welcoming gesture to make the employee feel that they’re still part of the company no matter how long they’ve been on sick leave.
6. Make A Commitment To Safety
Employees’ safety should be the primary concern of every company, especially if their jobs or the workplace is accident-prone. It’s not enough to just have your employees undergo safety training; it’s also a must that they’re able to apply their learnings whenever necessary.
Conduct drills once in a while, so each employee will know how to respond accordingly during an accident. If your employees are properly trained or educated, injuries or fatalities can be prevented or lessened.
Moreover, an emergency escape way must be communicated to the employees beforehand because, during an accident, it’s a must to take good care of themselves first more than anyone else.
Regular on-site safety inspections shouldn’t be neglected as well because this is the key to ensuring that accidents and injuries at work are prevented as much as possible.
Tips In Making The Workplace Safe
Making the workplace safe at all times can be achieved through the combined efforts of the employers and the employees.
Even though the company’s management may have done its part in maintaining precautionary measures to avoid accidents that may result in injuries if they’re not being followed by the employees or aren’t aware of them then security isn’t a sure thing.
Creating a safe workplace doesn’t have to be expensive, here are some of the simple safety tips that every business can adopt:
Use Labels And Signs
This is a cheap and effective way to remind every employee of hazards that they need to be aware of while in the workplace. For example, if there are chemicals involved in the work operations, it’s important to label every single one of them to avoid mistakes that can be harmful to anyone. Even an experienced worker may make mistakes, so as a precautionary measure, ensure that everything is labeled to let everyone know how to properly handle every item at work.
Maintain A Clean Environment
If everything is kept clean and organized, unnecessary accidents can be avoided. There should be programs such as ‘Clean As You Work’ and ‘Clean As You Go’ to encourage everyone to keep their work area tidy. There should also be someone who’ll conduct regular inspections to check if supplies and tools are well organized and to inspect that everything is in order all throughout the day.
Make Sure That Each Employee Uses The Right Tools For Their Task
One of the most common workplace injuries stems from the misuse of tools, equipment, or machines. If an employee needs to operate a certain tool or machine to deliver their tasks, they should receive proper training on how to handle it properly.
Orient them of the safety protocols while using their designated tools and equipment. Make sure that those employees who aren’t trained in using them must be restricted from operating them.
Encourage Everyone To Report Unsafe Conditions
One of the most effective precautionary measures at work is to report unsafe conditions. If an employee notices malfunctioning equipment, structural defects, or any hazardous condition, it’s essential to let the management know about them for prompt action. Regular on-site inspections will also help in determining unsafe conditions in the workplace.
Wear Proper Gear
Wearing proper safety gear, like the right kind of shoes and clothes, serves as extra protection against different kinds of elements that may cause harm. Employers must be strict in implementing this. If there’s 100% compliance, it may significantly reduce workplace accidents.
When your employee gets injured, your help as an employer doesn’t stop in giving them medical attention and compensation. It’s also essential to put precautions and safety measures in place to make the workplace a safe haven for all the employees.
During an accident that results in an injury, respond immediately to control the situation easily, help your employee get proper medical care, commit to safety, and establish a return-to-work program.
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