In September each year, mental health organizations and people across the United States raise awareness for suicide prevention. In 2019, there were 307 workplace fatalities by suicide, the highest level on record. Workplace suicides increased by 1.0 percent from 2018 and by 34.1 percent from the 10-year low in 2015.
Join OSHA and our partners Oct. 18- Nov. 5 in a social media campaign to keep teen workers safe over the holiday season.
Join our effort to increase awareness and promote workplace safety and health resources for teen workers, and help us share this information with teens, parents, teachers, and employers! This effort is part of a larger campaign to protect teen workers at their jobs year-round. The 2021 theme is “Keeping teen workers safe is everyone’s job!”
From left: Kayla Jones, RN; Mollie Hiltibrand, RN; and Kay Lyn Mueting, RN and surgery manager, demonstrate proper PPE attire for surgery during the pandemic
Community HealthCare System (CHCS) is a nonprofit healthcare system that provides care to the rural communities of northeast Kansas. CHCS’s Community Hospital Onaga had an interest in identifying, standardizing, and continuously improving safety processes that would provide a safe work environment for employees, patients, residents, and guests. CHCS originally learned of the OSHA On-Site Consultation Program while researching ways to enhance workplace safety on the OSHA website. In 2000, the hospital had its first visit by the On-Site Consultation program in the Kansas Department of Labor.
After its initial visits, the hospital corrected all hazards found and worked to continuously improve its safety and health programs. The hospital achieved Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) recognition in December 2002 and is one of two hospitals in the SHARP program in Kansas. Since 2002, the hospital has had eight renewals, with the most recent being June 2021. Of its 13 locations, CHCS has 11 currently in SHARP.
SHARP acknowledges small and medium-sized businesses that have used OSHA On-Site Consultation Program services and operate exemplary workplace safety and health programs. Small businesses that achieve SHARP status receive a deferral from OSHA or the State Plan programmed inspections for the period that the SHARP designation is valid. Acceptance of a worksite into SHARP is an achievement that identifies the employer as a model for occupational safety and health among its business peers.
Safety is the top priority for Community Hospital Onaga. It has maintained rates below the industry averages for both the total recordable case (TRC) rate and the days away, restricted, and/or transfer (DART) rate. As a result, workers’ compensations costs have also remained low. When COVID-19 hit, the hospital quickly implemented a COVID-19 plan to protect its employees and clients.
“Our safety and health program encourages organizational anticipatory critical thinking, engineering out accidents before they happen, and conducting root cause analysis to fix problems. All of that has been useful as we have navigated COVID-19 and worked to ensure that we keep our staff and patients safe,” said Michael Bomberger, Director of Business Development and Special Projects.
The OSHA Technical Manual (OTM) provides technical information about workplace hazards and controls to OSHA’s Compliance Safety and Health Officers (CSHOs). This information supports OSHA’s enforcement and outreach activities to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women. The content is based on currently available research publications, OSHA standards, and consensus standards. The OTM is available to the public for use by other health and safety professionals, employers, and anyone involved in developing or implementing an effective workplace safety and health program.
The OTM is not a substitute for OSHA standards and is not used for establishing agency compliance policies. In the unlikely event of any inconsistencies between material in the manual and the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act and the standards and regulations promulgated there under, the latter are controlling.
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