Healthy, happy employees who feel safe and cared for are more productive, engaged, and satisfied with their jobs. After the COVID-19 pandemic, this is even more true of all workplaces, and especially those in healthcare.
In order to create a thriving healthcare workplace, it’s important that healthcare employers and organizations focus on creating a safer workplace.
Healthcare Professionals Want to Feel Safe at Work
We all want to feel safe and valued at work. When that’s not the reality of a workplace, employees may feel unsafe, overstressed, and fatigued. Studies have shown that employees under stress or who feel unsafe cannot perform their duties as well.
Exhaustion, stress, and injuries are even tied to a higher risk of errors in the healthcare environment. Studies have even shown that patient satisfaction levels are lower in hospitals where nurses were dissatisfied and burnt out, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
This isn’t a matter of just offering more PTO or hosting pizza parties in the breakroom. Studies show that a top-down approach to prioritizing safety can lead to improved performance of employees, fewer barriers to care for patients, and reduced liabilities.
Healthcare employers and key decision-makers in hospital and medical organizations can build a safer workplace by improving three things: communication with employees, emergency preparedness, and tools for reducing and reporting incidents of workplace violence.
Keep Staff Informed with Reliable, Immediate Communication
Outside of the everyday risks of a healthcare professional’s job (exposure to biohazards, physical and mental burnout, patient abuse, and more), there’s an added element to their safety concerns. From natural disasters to code silvers and violets (active shooter or violent/combative patient), healthcare employees have a lot to potentially navigate.
They also know that, when emergencies like this happen, mere seconds count. Communicating across an entire hospital or team is crucial, especially during a public health emergency like COVID-19, weather disaster, or civil disturbance.
Though smartphones are ubiquitous nowadays, they shouldn’t be used as the sole platform for communication in both emergency and non-emergency situations, especially in the healthcare workplace. Many healthcare professionals aren’t allowed to have phones out during their shifts, or they may be too focused on caring for their patients or their other responsibilities to check their phones.
To ensure cohesive, cross-department notifications, Rave Alert offers the solution for these unique challenges in the healthcare workplace. Our mass notification system allows you to send one message simultaneously across not only text, but also email, desktop, public address systems, social media, and much more.
A reliable and secure mass notification system like Rave Alert also comes in handy for routine, non-emergency information as well. An IT failure, need to fill shifts, or anything else that can disrupt the workday can be communicated through Rave Alert — wherever your employees are and even if they lack access to a computer or phone.
Prepare for the Unexpected Ahead of Time
To be better prepared for any type of emergency, it’s essential that there is one secure, centralized library of safety resources that employees can access. Employers must also be proactive in familiarizing their staff with safety policies and procedures.
Healthcare employers can use the Rave Platform to improve emergency preparedness and response by scheduling weather drills, fire drills, active shooter drills, facility lockdowns, and other routine safety drills. Employees can also access emergency plans and policies when they need them.
Protect your Employees Against Workplace Violence
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health defines workplace violence as “violent acts, including physical assaults and threats of assault, directed toward persons at work or on duty.” While workplace violence studies and statistics often focus on physical abuse or threat of physical abuse, verbal abuse can result in significant harm as well.
About 2 million American employees across industries and professions report being victims of workplace violence every year. And in our recent report, 27% of healthcare administrators said that they experienced workplace violence within the last two years. Patients, visitors, intruders, and coworkers can all commit acts of workplace violence, making healthcare environments unsafe and increasingly stressful.
Because healthcare professionals feel a professional and ethical duty to care for patients, acceptance of or underreporting of workplace violence may be common. This unique challenge requires a communication solution that’s confidential, secure, and discreet.
With Rave Guardian, healthcare workers can report threats, abuse, suspicious activity, and any other concerns through an anonymous text-to-tip system. This personal safety app also stores important resources so that, should an act of violence or threat of violence occur, a healthcare employee can contact the right people to report the incident.
Build a Safe Healthcare Workplace with the Right Platform
To create a safe workplace for healthcare workers, employers and organization stakeholders should focus on the following:
- Keep staff informed and updated when the unexpected happens
- Prepare employees for the next emergency with routine safety drills and by sharing emergency plans
- Use a multimodal mass notification system to reach everyone in seconds, no matter their location or access to devices
- Protect employees from violence or the threat of violence with safety and reporting tools
The Rave critical communication and collaboration platform allows healthcare employers to do all this and more. Rave’s features are essential in creating a safer work environment. These features include:
- A FedRAMP-authorized mass notification system that allows users to send messages quickly and reliably in just three clicks
- A personal safety app that lets employees report threats or workplace violence, provides them with emergency assistance and shares wellness and mental health resources
- A user-friendly dashboard that makes compliance and safety tasks easier, from decision-making to assigning roles to sharing policies and procedures
A safe working environment that offers and promotes employee wellbeing is the right of every healthcare worker. Protect, inform, and empower your employees with tools and resources that contribute to a safer workplace. Learn more about how Rave can provide workplace safety solutions for your organization by scheduling a demo today.