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Personal protective equipment that will keep Libby safe

Personal protective equipment that will keep Libby safe | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
Desolie Crilley's insight:

Personal protective equipment is a priority to Libby's safety.  She is often dealing with body fluids, contaminated wastes and infectious patients. It is not always about protecting herself but caring for patients with low immunity, means that she must also protect the patients.  Gloves, gowns and masks are all equipment that she uses on a daily basis.  Libby receives education about the importance of ppe to protect herself due to the potential life threatening consequences that could occur if she is not diligent.

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Keeping Libby safe from sharps

Desolie Crilley's insight:

This is a great article very clearly outlining best practices to ensure Libby reduces the risks associated with needlestick injuries.

It highlights the tools such as the needles, syringes and safe disposal containers.  Education will give Libby safe practices that she can follow and policies and procedures will ensure she always has something to refer to. It also covers what to do in the event of a needlestick injury.

 

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Reducing Libby's compassion fatigue and stress

Reducing Libby's compassion fatigue and stress | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
With nurses at risk of compassion fatigue, hospitals try to ease their stress Washington Post (blog) Jan Powers, a clinical nurse manager in the pediatric oncology unit at the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, remembers how hard it...

Via Shane Turner
Desolie Crilley's insight:

In a caring a profession such as nursing you tend to see people often at their most vulnerable.  It can be incredibly draining on a person when you are constantly having to be upbeat and putting your own feelings aside to accommodate your patients.  Seeing and hearing illness and death on a regular basis certainly takes it toll.  Taking time out to destress and debrief is important to the mental wellbeing of nurses.  This article outlines some really imaginative and bonding experiences that will only benefit Libby.

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Libby

Libby | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
Desolie Crilley's insight:

Pictured here is Libby, a friend of mine, who is a carer at an aged care facility on the Gold Coast.  Libby has been working as a carer for …. Years and while she may not look it, Libby is 62 years old.  I explained to Libby what I was doing as part of my assessment and she was so keen she gave me a long list.  On reflection of the list, she wondered how she had survived in the industry so long with so many potential hazards but then realised she is very conscious of OHS and looking after herself that a lot of her behaviours are second nature to her.

Chemicals are used in the facility and Libby generally only uses microshield which is a hand sanitiser.  On occasions she uses multipurpose cleansers to clean spills.  The facility has MSD sheets for all chemicals used and she has free access to them. 

Electrtical wiring can be a problem to her because they can cause be a trip hazard  to her and to  residents.  There is also the potential for electrocution.  All residents that bring in any electrical appliance must have that item tagged by a registered electrician .

The photo show Libby standing by a hoist that she uses on a daily basis.  It is used to transfer and reposition resident in a safe manner for both the resident, Libby and her colleagues.  It is able to transfer resident up to 150kgs.  Walkbelts are another manual handling aid.  They wrap around the resident and secure with Velcro.  On the belt here are handles that allow the carer to put their arm around the resident and guide them.  Another aid she uses is called a slide sheet.  This is a sheet made of very light material the is able to be positioned under a resident that is bed bound and allows the carers to reposition the resident from side to side. Wheelchairs are another aid that is used in the facility to transfer residents.  It is mandatory for all staff prior to commencing shifts that they complete a theory and practical program that not only provides education on how to use equipment but also has a component that is dedicated to looking after the carers own health.

Confined spaces and narrow staircases is another challenge that Libby highlighted.  As the facility is the residents home, often rooms are cluttered and overcrowded as the resident often tries to cram as much in their room as possible.  While the facility tries to accommodate residents needs and desires as best as possible, it is the responsibility of the facility to ensure that the carers work in a safe environment.  Environmental assessments are performed to maintain clear pathways and remove tripping hazards

Poor lighting is another issue Libby identified.  She stated that at night, she often works by very low light or torch light.  This really highlights the importance of the above hazard being well managed as in low light, cluttered, confined spaces become a real challenge. 

And then, Libby saved the best or I think the worst till last. Handling bodily fluids will always be an unavoidable part of the job.  Wearing gloves, plastic aprons and practicing good infection control techniques is paramount to make sure she stays safe against contaminations. It is also mandatory for her to attend annual trainings that reinforce her safe practices.

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Gotcha!

Gotcha! | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
Desolie Crilley's insight:

Fishing is a past time that I really enjoy with my niece Cassie.  When I approached Cassie to discuss what hazards we may encounter she laughed and said embarrassment when we come home empty handed!  While I had to agreed we get a fair bit of stick from family, I hardly considered that a hazard unless she was psychologically traumatised.  We both agreed that this really wasn’t a big issue but together, did come up with some points.


There are lots of potential injuries that can occur when fishing.  Firstly, you are using equipment that can potentially cause cuts, lacerations and infections.  When priming the line and attaching hooks, more often than not your fingers will catch the hook which are incredibly sharp.  It is difficult to avoid this other than to take particular care, as wearing gloves make it virtually impossible to knot a fishing line.   Baiting the hook is a potential hazard.  Also when you are removing the hook from the fish’s mouth there is the chance to hook yourself.  While this may be a foreseeable risk, the injury is usually very minor.  I guess this is a time when you decide whether the risk is an acceptable one.  Gutting the fish requires very sharp knives.  Cassie will always wear gloves in this situation and cuts away from herself.  She is also well educated on how to properly gut and fillet a fish.


Casting of the line requires a safe approach.  Other fishermen, onlookers and the environment can easily be hooked.  She visually scans around and behind herself for people. When fishing from docks, posts, fences or protruding objects may get caught by the line. It is equally important to be vigilant on boats, as you are in a confined space with more objects to catch and people in much closer proximity. Having a good casting technique is key, as this is important to avoid the hook flicking back and hitting her. She has also seen someone overbalance and end up in the water. 


Fishing in the sun for hours at a time often without shade can lead to sunburn and sunstroke.  This photo shows her in a bikini so that is an obvious hazard that she has overlooked here.  At least she is wearing a hat and a big bottle of water and a bottle of sunscreen is also in the picture so that is something!  We both agree that sunscreen, hat and shirt are the best possible ways to avoid sunburn and that water is important to maintain her hydration.  Cassie also enjoys night fishing that raises another issue.  A good torch or lantern is necessary so she can clearly see.  It also is a personal safety item.  She always ensures that she is not in a secluded area and that there are plenty of other  people around her.  She never fishes at night on her own.


The environment where you fish also has hazards.  When in a boat, you must ensure that you have a well maintained vessel.  It is important that the boat is sturdy and can withstand the conditions you go out in.  The engine is serviced regularly and has plenty of petrol to get you to and from your destination.  Life jackets should be worn at all times.  A radio or mobile phone so you call for help if you have engine failure.  Always go out with a friend, never alone and tell someone who is not going, when and where you intend to fish and when you expect to return.  Fishing from rocks can be very dangerous.  Again, Cassie never goes out on her own.  The potential for falling on slippery rocks is a real hazard.  She always wears good shoes, rubber soles like runners, for better grip.  She watches the ocean as freak waves can occur at any time and Cassie is always scanning the horizon.  Check the conditions and weather prior to going fishing.


Just a note on the photo, it looks like she has caught a whopper when in fact, the line is snagged.  We thought we would use this one because it looks like she has hooked a big one!

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Safe lifting for Libby

Manual tasks are carried out in most types of work. A person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) must manage risks to health and safety relating to a musculoskeletal disorder associated with a hazardous manual task.
Desolie Crilley's insight:

This is a terrific site that touches on not only the manual handling injuries but on preventative measures that will keep Libby safe.  There are also many links like those that reference manual tasks risk management programs. The site is all about education, identifying hazards and  preventing Libby from injury. Manual handling is  a large part of Libby's daily duties.  Patients incapacitated by illness rely on correct manual handling as good practice is not only to protect Libby but also the patients she is caring for.

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To LIbbys rescue! Saving her from challenging behaviours

To LIbbys rescue! Saving her from challenging behaviours | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
“We are one of the most dangerous professions,” said Elizabeth Mizerek, RN, MSN, CEN, CPEN, FN-CSA, New Jersey State Council of the Emergency Nurses Association chairwoman for research and practice. ENA research has found significant underreporting of workplace violence.
Desolie Crilley's insight:

Libby faces many challenging behaviours from not just patients but families as well.  These behaviours can be both physical and verbal.  What is probably the most challenging factor is that often these behaviours are by patients diagnosed with dementia or are compromised by drugs so cannot be held responsible for their actions.

I liked this article as it gives options for Libby to use to prevent or reduce the hazards.  Ensuring the environment is as safe as possible with panic bells and the controlling the number of people within the area are a positive move.  Also education on managing behaviours, counselling and strategies to implement when challenging behaviours occur. 

 

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Working man

Working man | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
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Sean

The above is a photo of my son, Sean,20 years old and a labour at a joinery factory. The business produces cupboards, kitchens, bathrooms and panelling for both the private and public sector.  When I first asked Sean to list some of the hazards he deals with at work each day, he started rattling off a list so quickly I had to ask him to slow down.  I found it refreshing to find someone so young so aware of the hazards within his workplace.  He told me that safety is taken very seriously in his workplace and on commencement of employment he was made aware of OHS and the workplaces responsibilities as well as his own to ensure his safety. It is a predominantly male orientated workplace with a fulltime safety officer who is diligent in his job and regularly holds education workshops.  Sean also tells me he has no problem coming down on anyone not following correct procedures.

The factory has a lot of complex machinery.  Needless to say it can be very loud.  When working with machinery or if he is on the factory floor, Sean must wear personal hearing protection which is supplied by the business.  The importance of wearing the hearing protection was relayed to all the workers by the owner of the business who has worked in this profession for over 40 years and in his early years didn’t wear hearing protection.  He now has severe hearing loss and requires hearing aids. 

The challenges Sean identified working with woods and laminates was the potential of lacerations and splinters. When the wood is in its raw state, it is rough and splinters are a hazard.  The laminates, when the sheets are cut, have very sharp edges prior to the application of moulded edgings have the potential to cause deep lacerations.  Gloves are a necessity for protection against these hazards. 

The machine that Sean is working on in the photo puts the moulded edging on laminate sheeting.  He has to feed the edging through the machine that applies hot glue to the edging and sticks it to the laminate sheeting.  Sean identified a number of hazards in relation to this process.  Firstly, the machinery.  Feeding the edging through could potentially cause a crushing injury if his fingers or hands were to be caught.  To avoid this, the machine will not start unless the guard is in place.  Another issue is that the machinery needs to heat up the glue.  Sean says that it can become really hot and he has had a couple of burn injuries.  I think he could avoid the burn hazard by wearing gloves.

When working on machines that cut the woods and laminates, dust and particles are produced.  This is an inhalation hazard and by wearing masks, this helps prevents respiratory complications.  Sean says that not only the dust and particles are an issue, but the smells of the glue and other products used can have really strong smells.  Again, masks make a big difference to the comfort of the worker.

Sean is required to lift, move, pull, push equipment and product that is not necessarily heavy but is often very awkward shapes and sizes.  For heavy products and equipment, a fork lift is used.  When he has to manual handle equipment or product, he assesses his ability to do on his own or whether he requires a partner.  Training for manual handling is provided to all staff on orientation and annually to ensure continued safe practice is maintained.

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Lifesaver

Lifesaver | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
Desolie Crilley's insight:

My second daughter, Maddie, 21 years old,  is a life saver at Wet n Wild on the Gold Coast.  She loves her job but says that the general public, because they can be so unpredictable,  will always be the biggest OHS issue she has.  Working in an environment that involves a lot of people and water can be particularly challenging.  She says that a lot of the people who come to the park are overseas visitors who often have very little experience in the water and sometimes cant swim. 

 

Dealing with the public can be very testing.  She often faces difficult and belligerent people and has to remain calm and assertive.  Patrons who are hot and bothered and have waited in queues for a long time do not always want to heed safety instructions.  It is her responsibility to educate patrons to ensure their safety.  The rides themselves pose hazards themselves. Rides are signposted with warnings about remaining seated and the do’s and don’ts to ensure a safe and fun experience. Patrons are often required to be of a certain height or weight.  She must measure or weigh patrons before allowing them on rides.

 

Drowning is a primary concern.  While on duty, particularly in the wave pool, she sits in the life guard chair and must concentrate on watching for anyone who may be struggling or in distress.  She has a whistle that she blows when she identifies non swimmers out of their depth or parents with small children going into deep water.  To avoid complacency and to remain alert, the guards move to a different station on the wave pool every 10 minutes.  It is compulsory for Maddie to complete her Bronze Medallion swimming competency annually and her Senior First Aid Certificate, which includes CPR, every 3 years. It is her job to jump into the water without hesitation if a rescue is required.   Every month Wet n Wild conduct mandatory trainings that include, CPR, mock rescues and timed swims to ensure that the guards can swim from point A to B within a certain timeframe.  The park also conducts random breath testing for alcohol on the life guards and there is a zero tolerance policy. If the breath test registers any reading, it is instant dismissal.

 

Slipping on wet surfaces is also a problem.  She is not required to wear any particular footwear, and she usually wears thongs.   This isn’t usually a problem for her as a rule as pool and ride surrounds have slip proof coatings.  It seems to be more of a problem for patrons if they run but she highlighted that there are no ‘No Running’ signposts.

 

 

Being a lifeguard sees her spend most of the day outdoors often in very hot conditions so sunburn and sunstroke is a hazard.  It is compulsory for her to wear a hat and long sleeved shirts.  There are sunscreen stations for lifeguards around the park and they are encouraged to reapply regularly.  The staff are encouraged to carry water bottles with them to maintain hydration.

 

 

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Fun in the sun

Fun in the sun | Quest 2 | Scoop.it
Desolie Crilley's insight:

This a photo of my daughter Angie, 24, and she is a keen surfer. When we sat down to discuss the potential hazards and risks associated, her first words were, ‘I never really thought about anything that may be a problem except sharks!’. Yes, that could definitely be a problem! We then began to list some the hazards and what she could do to reduce the risks and group them as low, medium or high and whether she was prepared to accept the risk.

 

Sharks were high on the list. Firstly, you are in the sharks’ environment so you cannot avoid that. While we both considered the risk of attack as low, and a risk she is prepared to take, how could she further reduce that risk and below is the list came up with.

• Surf at a beach that has aerial patrol.

• Early morning, late evening or night times are when sharks are more active so best avoid

• Surf with friends, more eyes to spot a shark

• Bright colours and shiny jewellery have been known to attract sharks

• Don’t surf near fishermen as bait and burley may attract sharks

 

The second hazard was sunburn or sunstroke. Another unavoidable hazard but this rated high on the risk level. She decided that if she followed the list below, that would reduce the risk to an acceptable level for her.

• Wear a rash vest

• Apply a good high rating sunscreen and reapply regularly

• When out of the water, seek shade and wear a hat

 

Drowning is again, an unavoidable hazard due to the environment. Angie is a strong swimmer but there are other influences that can lead to drowning

• Know how to swim

• Pay attention to the conditions and know your skill level

• Educate yourself on how to get out of trouble like being caught in rips

• Surf with a friend

• Don’t surf on the same wave as another and watch carefully when paddling back out to the break to avoid collision with another surfer or board

 

Personal injury and injury to others is another hazard. A surfboard can be a deadly object as can other people, reefs and rocks.

• Surf with a friend • Wear a leg band to prevent the board shooting off wildly

• Check the conditions for rips and shore breakers

• Avoid surfing near swimmers

• Don’t surf on the same wave as another and watch carefully when paddling back out to the break to avoid collision with another surfer or board

 

The last hazard recognised was from Angie which was stomach rash. This never occurred to me but she said that if you didn’t wear a rash vest you could end up with a very painful rash from the board.

 

We noted that to reduce the risks in most hazards while Angie was surfing,  was to surf with a friend.

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