Aon Affinity Healthcare offers a wide range of informative articles, claims studies, and fact sheets targeted to the needs of the Aging Services community. Check back often to read our latest Featured Risk articles.
Current Featured Risk Article Topics (click to jump to topic):
Facility Safety | Outbreaks & Transmitted Illnesses | Transporting Patients | Other (safety calendar, claims, equipment, more)
Active Shooter: How to Respond
An Active Shooter is an individual actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area; in most cases, active shooters use firearms(s) and there is no pattern or method to their selection of victims. Active shooter situations are unpredictable and evolve quickly. Typically, the immediate deployment of law enforcement is required to stop the shooting and mitigate harm to victims. Because active shooter situations are often over within 10 to 15 minutes, before law enforcement arrives on the scene, individuals must be prepared both mentally and physically to deal with an active shooter situation.
Hand hygiene in the healthcare setting
Proper hand hygiene is the best way to keep from getting sick and prevent germs from being spread to others. For hospitals, nursing homes and other healthcare facilities, hand hygiene is particularly important to control disease transmission.
Bathroom Safety in Healthcare Facilities
Bathroom accidents account for a number of serious injuries to patients and residents in long term care, hospital and senior living facilities. Major potential hazards in the bathroom include slips and falls, burn injuries, and electric shock.
Preventing slip and fall accidents in nursing homes and long term care facilities
Outbreaks & Transmitted Illnesses
Slips and falls are a leading type of accident occurring in nursing homes and long term healthcare facilities. In addition to the alarming frequency of these accidents, the injuries sustained in slip and fall accidents can be very serious, requiring a long time for recovery or leading to the onset of debilitating or even life threatening complications. Accordingly, the prevention of slips and falls in the long term care environment must be viewed an indicator of quality care.
Zika Virus Outbreak: Tips to Help Protect Workers
The rapid spread of the Zika virus in the Americas has raised concerns among public health officials due to its link to two potentially serious health effects. Most individuals infected with the virus will experience only mild symptoms, if they note any symptoms at all. This Risktopic provides background on the current Zika outbreak and provides guidance for businesses in managing the Zika threat. As with any emerging disease outbreak, the information on Zika is changing and current references should be monitored periodically for up to date information. A list of useful references is included at the end of this document.
Cleaning and disinfection plans during an influenza outbreak
The influenza virus can live as long as eight hours on some surfaces. Proper cleaning and disinfection are effective ways to minimize the spread of the virus through surface contact. Whether you have in-house janitorial staff or a contract cleaning service, it is important to have a comprehensive cleaning plan to help ensure all parties understand their responsibilities.
Influenza Outbreak: What your business should be doing
The current influenza season may be the most widespread since the H1N1 pandemic of 2009-2010. Due to medical advances, today's flu outbreaks have not taken the human toll they once did. However, the financial impact on business and global trade is much greater than ever before.
The Fight Against HAIs at Long Term Care Facilities
For more than a decade, researchers and healthcare professionals have been fighting an uphill battle against healthcare associated infections (HAIs). The impacts go well beyond the financial costs of having to treat patients who get sicker. The toll in human terms is staggering when tallying the suffering and death of patients and residents.
Ebola Outbreak: Tips for Protecting Workers
While Ebola outbreaks are generally limited to Africa, the latest outbreak raises some important implications for travelers, the healthcare industry and travel related services due to the potential for disease spread. This Risktopic outlines some of the strategies that can be used to address this issue.
Strategies for Addressing the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) Threat
Although most of the cases of MERS have occurred in the Middle East, this disease raises some important implications for the healthcare industry and businesses in general due to the concern that it may become a global pandemic outbreak. This Risktopic outlines some of the strategies that can be used to address this threat.
Environmental conditions like moist surfaces and improper temperatures encourage bacteria and parasite growth and increase the likelihood of food contamination. Many times it is virtually impossible to detect whether food has been contaminated or not. This is because some bacteria do not alter the smell or appearance of the food that has been tainted. Proper food handling and preparation techniques can effectively control bacteria growth, lessen the likelihood, and/or eliminate damage of food poisoning. However, if appropriate food handling practices are ignored, the contaminated food could cause severe illness, irreversible organ damage, or even death.
Tips for addressing a Measles Outbreak
The current measles outbreak may not impact your business directly, but taking a few steps can minimize the impact on your business should this outbreak or another infectious disease outbreak potentially impact your business.
Safe handling of bariatric patients and residents
As the world population average body weight continues to rise, due primarily to lifestyle choices and high caloric/fat diets, the average healthcare patient's size and weight is also increasing. There is currently a need to address how healthcare workers can provide good patient/resident care while preventing injury to the patient/resident or themselves.
Understanding what obesity and bariatrics are, the injury potentials, and available solutions to control these injuries are essential as part of an effective risk management program.
Paratransit passenger safety
Paratransit or non-emergency medical transportation fleets service a wide range of customers and geographic locations. Many patients receiving outpatient medical services rely on community and privately funded companies for transportation.
Wheel chair passenger handling
Para-transit or non-emergency medical transportation fleets service a wide range of customers and geographic locations. Many patients receiving outpatient medical services rely on community and privately funded companies for transportation. The most commonly used vehicles are vans, mini-buses, sprinters and specially equipped vehicles for wheelchair passengers.
Employees in the medical transportation field are often hired to perform one primary job function, but an additional responsibility may also include driving. For example, an Emergency Medical Technician’s primary role is to respond to incidents and save lives, however, they may also be tasked with driving an ambulance to the scene of an accident. This added responsibility presents an exposure to the ambulance company, the employees, as well as the general public.
Non-Emergency Medical Transportation
This safety guide provides a broad description of common exposures in the Non- Emergency Medical Transport (NEMT) industry and the controls used to help minimize or eliminate losses associated with crashes. Crashes and passenger injuries can be reduced by implementing effective preventive measures through policies and procedures designed to control all types of exposures. This guide includes some of the critical program components needed for a comprehensive prevention plan for paratransit or non-emergency medical transportation fleets.
Patient handling issues in medical transportation
One should remember that a client does not need to meet the usual criteria for ‘morbidly obese’ to present a transfer or transport challenge. Each patient encounter should include an assessment of the appropriateness of the resources available (crew’s lifting capability, manpower, equipment, etc.) to safely move the patient.
Other (safety calendar, claims, equipment, more)
Marijuana and Workplace Drug Policies
The legal status of marijuana has changed drastically over the last ten years. While it is considered a Schedule 1 narcotic by the U.S. Federal Government, many states and some local jurisdictions have legalized medical and even recreational uses of marijuana. Other states have decriminalized the use and possession of small quantities of marijuana. This has impacted workplace drug policies and the concept of drug free workplaces. Given the changes made, it is important to understand the impact that Federal, state and local regulation have on your drug policy. Ultimately, any workplace drug policy developed or revised should be reviewed by competent legal counsel familiar with the business operations and applicable regulations in the locations where the company does business.
Healthcare manager's 2015 safety calendar
The information in the Healthcare calendar is an accumulation of best practices. The calendar should be of great value to your operation. Management generating safety awareness is one of the best ways of controlling and reducing claims and related expenses.
The epidemiology of malpractice claims in primary care: a systematic review
Healthcare in the primary care setting is becoming increasingly complex. These complexities include caring for patients with multimorbidity and polypharmacy, the pressure of short consultation times and the increasingly fragmented nature of primary and secondary care. All these issues increase the risk of unintentional patient harm.
Power Assisted Cots (PACs)
Power assisted cots (PACs) have the potential to reduce injuries because lifting and lowering, to and from the ground, is not required in the patient loading or unloading process. These devices may prove to be the greatest step to date toward eliminating the back injuries so common in EMS and non-emergency transport.
Non-Traditional Approaches to Workplace Violence Prevention
As healthcare organizations attempt to improve their workplace prevention (WPV) programs today in regards to patient/resident aggression, many are evaluating the use of non-traditional program components. Traditional approaches (training, security personnel, investigation, physical barriers), while still important, deliver limited results and often do not significantly impact the frequency and/or severity of patient and employee injuries. Non-traditional and innovative methods are being successfully utilized. Many of these actions take minimal time and little additional cost.
Traditional Approaches to Workplace Violence Prevention
Prevention of workplace violence events in healthcare settings is a priority for many of today’s management teams. This Risk Topic discusses traditional approaches to addressing healthcare workplace violence prevention. Non-traditional approaches are discussed in a separate Risk Topic. When developing or re-assessing an existing program, both approaches should be evaluated and considered.
Counterfeit products have become a global phenomenon, affecting all industry sectors, some to an alarming extent. They pose serious health and safety risks to consumers. Counterfeiting is also causing widespread damage to the economy, society, and the environment, accelerated by the online economy and the tight links with international organized crime and the shadow economy.
Making communities more flood resilient
Many issues need to be considered when deciding how best to help protect a community from floods. In this paper, Zurich flood resilience alliance members examine methodologies that can support the decision-making process to help those when and where it matters most.
Hurricane emergency action plans
If you have property in a region prone to tropical storms, you should always have an up-to-date hurricane or typhoon emergency action plan in place.