You have probably heard the phrase "accident at work" but there is usually very little accidental about injuries that occur while working. Most workplace injuries can be prevented by well-designed work environments, proper training and safe work practices. Teamwork involving workers, their supervisors, senior management and occupational health and safety professionals is the most effective approach to reducing on-the job injuries and keeping workers healthy and productive. University of Michigan Health System employees literally make the system work. We all need to work together to make safety part of our daily routine so that the Health System can meet its goal of excellence in all we do.
What Employees Can Do
- Be sure you understand all the safety features of the equipment you use.
- Be sure you understand how to do every task of your job in a safe manner.
- Be sure you understand the proper way to use chemicals and other hazardous materials.
- If safety instructions aren't clear, ask again. No question is too simple or hard for an answer!
- Use what you learn -- all the time.
- Don't take short cuts! The safe way is always the fastest and most efficient in the long run.
- If you have been given personal protective equipment, such as respirators, hearing protective devices, or safety glasses, use them consistently.
- Washing hands after patient contact will reduce infections.
- Share safety suggestions with others; be an active member of the safety team.
- If you have a concern about the safety of your work environment, share it with your supervisor and the Safety office.
- If you get injured while working, inform your supervisor and have him or her direct you to care.
- If you have an exposure to a body substance, call U-M Occupational Health Services (764-8021) immediately.
What Employers Can Do
- Make sure every new employee receives safety training before starting his/her job.
- Make safety training an ongoing program, not a one-time event.
- Make safety an organizational priority.
- Reward employees who consistently use safe practices.
- Create a safe work environment.
- Create a work culture that supports open communication about safety issues.