By David Altman
Hospitals are among the most hazardous workplaces in the U.S. In 2011, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 253,700 accidents were reported, an average of 6.8 work-related injuries for every 100 full-time employees. Rates of injuries reported to OSHA are decreasing in all industries except for hospitals, whose rates are double the average.
Could a set of digital apps help identify and reduce occupational and environmental risks in a quick and efficient manner? That is what Nick Kielbania, MS, CSP, CHMM, director of Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) and Adrian Hudson, PhD, MCompSc, principal software architect at Boston Children’s Hospital, set out to create.
Their web-based solution, enabled for Apple and Android devices, is called the BCH Environmental Health and Safety Application Suite. Designed to aid hospital emergency response, safety and support services, the applications encompass fire, clinical, research, construction and environmental safety, with additional apps for on-call and administrative personnel.
The automated system allows for standardized data entry and provides a centralized dashboard where safety staff and emergency responders can analyze data, identify key risk indicators and make data-driven, real-time decisions during an emergency.
The application suite currently has 2,400 registered users including architects, contractors, subcontracts, engineers, facilities staff and the safety teams.
From reactive to proactive
Previously, the EH&S team mainly used paper and pencil or multiple database applications to document safety activities. This required a search through hardcopy files or data mining through antiquated systems to retrieve current and archived files.
“When I joined the team, we had several different systems that never communicated with each other – be it paper, pencil or databases,” says Hudson. “The process delayed safety responses, and it often took safety personnel multiple hours a month to document accidents.”
With the application suite, time previously spent by safety staff behind a desk filling out paperwork has been re-allocated to an increased field presence. That has greatly helped identify and correct developing risks to prevent accidents from occurring.
Read the full post on Vector: Risk mitigation made easy: Apps make hospital safety proactive
The opinions expressed in this blog post are the author’s only and do not necessarily reflect those of MassDevice.com or its employees.