Safety Culture Prevents Accidents
May 24, 2010 1 Comment
Friend (2000) suggest setting up key performance indicators to check the safety culture and act on deviations from these performance indicators. Periodic review is suggested to confirm the validity of the key performance indicators and culture development. Reid (2008) highlights three steps to build up a safety culture. First, team’s errors, intentional or unintentional, are unacceptable and should be dealt with to either mitigate or end them. Second, acknowledge human factors in the care delivery. Third, set permanent quality improvement in the medical teams and leaders. Hard work is required to prove that such problem does exist at the work place. The problem might be intangible like potential for loss which can be prevented by an insurance policy. Management support and commitment is required to build safety culture. Management can support the culture by endorsing written safety documents like safety manual, safety policy, rules and regulation. Management should support a carrot and stick system to reward good safety behaviors and denounce unsafe behaviors.
Intangible items like shared values, beliefs and perceptions set safety culture in the work site. Management will focus on selected intangible elements of the culture according to the job nature. Deviations will not be accepted in these selected elements. Management should improve safety attitude and constantly assess the safety related issues to build a solid safety culture. Set up standard operating procedure and proactively manage assets. Assess each incident and share the learned lessons with employees. Encourage employees to document incidents regardless of their size or effect on the workplace. Analyze each incident and set a remedy to prevent its reoccurrence.
One of the important management responsibilities is to balance between safety and the incident cost reduction. Management should elevate safety awareness as part of their support to safety culture. Train employees, new and veteran, on safety related issues and encourage them to report incidents. Employ safety personal make them report to the highest management levels possible.
Enhance safety culture in your manufacturing sites. (Oct 2007). Hydrocarbon Processing, p.NA. Retrieved October 19, 2008, from Gale PowerSearch database.
Friend, M. (2000). Establishing a safety culture: getting started. Professional Safety, 45(5), 30. Retrieved October 18, 2008, from the EBSCOhost database.
Reid, J. (2008). Building a safety culture. The Journal of Perioperative Practice, 18(4), 134. Retrieved October 19, 2008, from ProQuest database.