Quality Framework for the Healthy Workers Initiative
Risk and Safety
|Programs are delivered safely through a comprehensive risk management approach.|
|Rationale||There are inherent potential risks in providing healthy living programs. These risks vary from minimal through to significant depending on the client, the intensity of programs being offered and the environment in which they are being delivered. Providers have a duty of care to clients, communities and funders to ensure appropriate risk management approaches in all program delivery to promote safety and minimise harm.|
|Risk and Safety Criteria||Why/How/Resources||Suggested Evidence|
|1.1 The provider has an active risk management policy||Why:
It is important that your staff (paid and volunteer) and program participants have a safe, fair and supportive environment and that program planning and work processes promote this. Risk can be defined as the combination of the probability of an event and its consequences6. A policy on risk management increases opportunities for positive outcomes, decreases the likelihood of undesirable results and provides a guide for staff on:
Providers need to have a policy in place that details how risk is assessed, how strategies are applied to reduce risk, as well as how hazards and incidents are reported and managed.
The following resources/ links provide useful resources and examples of risk policies;
|Evidence may include:
|Risk and Safety Criteria||Why/How/Resources||Suggested Evidence|
|1.2 A risk assessment is undertaken for all programs in each environment in which they are delivered.||Why:
The type and level of risk vary between environments and programs and can change over time. Out of concern for the health and safety of participants and staff, duty of care, good business sense and cost effectiveness, a risk assessment considering people, equipment and property should be completed for all programs in each specific environment in which they operate. Processes for reviewing and updating risk assessments should be established as part of good management practice.
When working with workplaces it is important to have a discussion with the employer as there will be shared risks in this environment. It is essential both the employer and service provider know who is responsible for what risks and how they will be managed.
Risk assessment is an ongoing process, undertaken at various times, including:
Risk assessment should be documented including naming of the risk, rating its likelihood and severity of consequence, the appropriate mitigation strategies and monitoring mechanisms. A Risk Assessment Template can be used for this purpose (example templates are in the resources below).
A hazard inspection should be undertaken on a regular basis (e.g. every two months) to identify any hazards. A standardised checklist can be developed to list possible hazards that may occur in your particular service.
Table 2 outlines potential risks for providers to consider for healthy eating, physical activity and general programs. These are a guide only, are not exhaustive and must be assessed for relevance.
The following resources/ links provide examples of risk assessment guidelines, templates and checklists:
Standards Australia. 2004. HB 246-2004 Guidelines for Managing Risk in Sport and Recreation
Standards Australia. 2004 Risk Management Guidelines Companion to AS/NZS 4360:2004
http://www.taslandcare.org.au/documents/RiskMgmt0107.pdf Extra Hands Sample Risk Assessment Template
http://www.fire.nsw.gov.au/page.php?id=73 Small Business Fire Safety
http://www.vcu.edu/oehs/safetymanual/auditchecklist.pdf Hazard Audit Checklist
|Examples include copies of:
Examples of Risk and Mitigation Strategies
|Incorrect use of equipment||Ensure staff and clients are trained and understand the correct use of equipment
Safety instructions are visible for all equipment and products
Safety equipment and protocols for its use are appropriately displayed.
|Medical emergency||First aid capacity and emergency response plans are in place and are appropriate to the level of risk. This may include:
Relevant staff undertake mental health first aid training.
|Spread of infection||Policies and processes to:
|Slips / trips||Ensure the environment is checked and hazards are removed where possible prior to program implementation
Ensure hazard signs are available and used for example for wet floors
|Inadequately maintained equipment||All equipment is maintained according to manufacturers specifications
An equipment maintenance plan is in place.
|Client safety||Appropriate security measures are in place. This may include:
|Emergency procedures||A communication strategy and contingency plan to use if an emergency occurs is available and:
|Personal information accessed without consent||Registration Forms and personal medical information is stored securely in a lockable container or cabinet
Information is accessible during each program should it be required e.g. for an emergency
Discussions with clients about personal information are conducted in private
Staff do not disclose information about clients without their consent.
Strict privacy guidelines for the use of social media including not providing others names or photos
|Financial Risk||Appropriate insurance in place
Fee structure reviewed regularly
|Healthy Eating Programs|
|Risk||Possible Risk Minimisation Strategies|
|Food handling breaches||
|Culturally appropriate foods||
|Suspicion of malnutrition or eating disorder||
|Physical Activity Programs|
|Inadvertent harm||Based on the level of intensity of the physical activity providers should:
|Dehydration||Water is encouraged before, during and soon after exercising.|
|Pain during exercise||Participants are advised to stop exercising and tell the leader if:
Seating and ice/cold packs are available where practical.
6 International Organisation for Standardisation. ISO/IEC Guide 73 Risk management – Vocabulary – Guidelines for use in standards. Geneva: ISO, 2002.
7 Food Safety Standards Mandatory Standards for All Food Businesses and Fact Sheets for Community Organisations http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/foodstandards/foodsafetystandardsaustraliaonly/
8 Risk screening is a primary level, simple assessment process aimed at identifying areas of risk that require further assessment. See http://www.essa.org.au/for-gps/adult-pre-exercise-screening-system/
9 This may be by for example General Practitioner, Exercise Physiologist, Dietician, Physiotherapist, Personal Fitness Trainer, depending on risk identified, type of program being offered and availability of local professionals.
Published date: July 2012