A medical emergency is a nightmare when it happens at home, on the street or at work. It can be no less of a nightmare if it happens in a healthcare facility where or when clinical staff are not already on the scene. Can your staff provide life saving measures should they come upon a medical emergency in the parking lot or witness an accident in the kitchen, shipping and receiving or some other part of the hospital where clinical staff are not readily available?
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has released 2020 data on workplace injuries and illnesses and the news appears to be generally good as there were decreases in the overall number of workplace injuries, perhaps due to the dramatic increase of telework during the emergence of the pandemic in 2020. Still, even though the numbers of injury cases declined, the actual number is still significant. There were 2.1 million non-fatal injuries in 2020. Unfortunately, and perhaps not surprisingly, the number of illnesses quadrupled during that same time to 544,600 cases.
There are ten occupations that account for more than 38% of those cases that resulted in days away from work and healthcare makes more than one appearance on the list. Not surprisingly, nursing assistants, registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and licensed vocational nurses all had notable increases in the incidence of days away from work. Other occupations on the top ten list that may work in healthcare settings are stock and material handlers, maintenance and repair workers and stockers. Perhaps what is surprising is that the number of non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses that occur in healthcare and social assistance settings is actually somewhat higher than those reported in construction, manufacturing and mining.
Your organization likely already has policies that describe how employees should respond to mass casualty incidents, active shooters, fires and other hazards, but a sick or injured patient, family member or colleague can be just as stressful, particularly for non-clinical staff who may not have the education or confidence to respond to an emergency. Typically about half of a hospital’s employees are non-clinical staff so it is somewhat likely that they will need to provide support during a medical emergency at some point in their working life.
Minutes can really matter when there is a medical emergency, so preparing non-clinical staff to respond and support the patient until clinical staff arrive on the scene is critical.
HealthStream’s Red Cross First Aid/CPR/AED training can build employee confidence in their ability to respond effectively to an emergency and it can also help leaders feel confident that non-clinical staff can respond to emergencies that happen outside of a clinical setting. The program is flexible enough to meet the needs of all of your non-clinical staff. But, more importantly it focuses on evidence-based skills that can save lives even when your clinical staff is still on their way.
The program includes an engaging instructional design that offers online and blended simulation options as well as free streaming videos. Employees can access the education at a time and place that is convenient for them and can proceed at a pace that will help them feel confident that they have mastered the skills. In addition, they will have access to a digital certificate immediately upon successful completion of the program.
The right tools can build confidence in non-clinical employees who may not feel naturally confident when facing a medical emergency. Building employee confidence along with their competence is crucial. This program can also help your organization’s leadership team feel confident that they have a well-prepared and trained team. In addition, the program will meet OSHA and other government and regulatory requirements.
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