“I find Arinite professional, responsive and committed to ensuring excellent health and safety practices within the workplace and within our resident’s homes.
I would recommend Arinite, they are responsive and reply very quickly to correspondence.
In addition to this our consultant is highly knowledgeable and is able to give us up to date information and guidance on a wide range of health and safety matters.
Having an independent person to run scenarios and situations past has resulted in reduced costs for example when we have received reports from insurers.”
Housing Operations Manager, Sapphire Independent Housing, June 2017
Health and Safety in Care Homes
Care homes differ from other workplaces because they are both a place of work and also a home to the residents. While meeting legal duties and following the right policies and procedures, they also need to be maintained as stimulating and pleasant places to live.
Arinite has extensive health and safety experience in supporting care homes that offer residential, nursing and dementia care. References are available from Arinite’s care home client’s which range in size from organisations with 5 care homes to those with nearly 200.
Arinite Care Home Services
Are you looking for a tailored and pragmatic health and safety service for your care homes that gives you and your staff peace of mind?
For multi- sited care homes Arinite specialises in providing assistance with individual projects or a fully “outsourced” solution, contact us for more information on 0207 947 9581
Our services include –
- Acting as one of your “competent” H&S persons
- Health and Safety Management Audits/Inspections – helps you identify if and where there are any significant gaps relating to HSE and Care Quality Commission (CQC) requirements
- Fire Risk Assessments – including fire emergency procedures, including PEEPs
- Fire Audits
- Benchmarking – the H&S Audits and Fire Risk Assessments can be scored a qualitative baseline to measure and demonstrate your Care Homes are achieving continuous improvement, or the audit can be without scoring
- Assistance with review and updating H&S Manual
- Assisting with the co-ordination of workplace Care Home risk assessments
- Face to-face Health and Safety training for: Directors, Care Homes Managers and other Managers, Fire Marshal, Health and Safety Co-ordinator, Risk Assessor, DSE Risk Assessor, Manual Handling, Stress Awareness, COSHH, Control of Contractors, Permit to Work, Work at Height and other H&S training
- DSE Computer Workstation Assessments
- Liaising with third parties such as CQC
- Attendance of Health and Safety Committee/ H&S meetings/ad hoc meetings
- Serious Accident, RIDDOR and incident investigation
- Other H&S services are provided…..WE would encourage you to make contact
Managing Health & Safety Policies and Procedures in Care Homes
The HSE‘s second edition of its guidance “HSG220 (2nd edition) on Health and Safety in Care Homes”, http://www.hse.gov.uk/pUbns/priced/hsg220.pdf providers a better understanding for the management of the risks to both workers and residents.
By clicking on the following headers you will see a number of one page Social and Care Home H&S factsheets. We have condensed the important points on each topic such as bed rails safety, prevention of infection and controls onto one page, trying to keep “H&S Simple.
- Managing Health & Safety
- The HSE revised guidance includes the methodology of ‘Plan, Do, Check and Act’ which is critical for Care Homes.
It is important to remember that to its residents the care home is their personal home.
Safe systems of work have to be created and implemented, staff should be trained and equipment must be purchased and maintained.
Employers can ill afford the losses resulting from accidents and work-related ill health. As well as the pain and suffering of the employee(s) involved there are less obvious losses such as the need to hire replacement staff, lost management time in resolving issues, higher insurance premiums, and staff training costs.
Click the headers below to download Arinite Care Sector factsheet
- Reporting of Incidents – RIDDOR
- The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR) Care Homes requires that employers must record, report and investigate any near miss, incident or dangerous occurrence.
A full investigation should aim to understand the root causes of the incident to prevent it happening again. Discussing incident trends periodically will help reduce the probability of the incident reoccurring.
When undertaking an investigation:
- Take a statement from the injured person and any witnesses.
- Take a photo of incident area as soon as possible.
- Review documentation for any equipment involved and check the inspection schedules.
- Check if there was a risk assessment in place and when it was last updated?
- Check if a PPE was required and if it was used?
- Review the records showing staff have received appropriate training and supervision.
- Check if this was a repeat incident and what action had been taken previously.
- After a full signed and dated investigation you must implement reasonable and sensible actions, and inform those that need to know.
- Moving and Handling
- The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 were introduced to reduce the numbers of injuries from moving and handling throughout industry including the care sector.
The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER) apply to the tasks and equipment used in the lifting and moving of people.
- Equipment Safety
- All equipment used in the Care Home must be listed, logged and maintained according to manufacturer’s recommendations and legal requirements.
Lifting equipment will need statutory inspections and service maintenance records. All staff using the equipment must have specific work equipment instruction, information, training and supervision.
Visual inspections should be undertaken by all staff before using any equipment.
The Asset Register should have the details of the schedules for all service checks to be carried out externally or internally by a competent engineer. Electrical equipment will require portable electrical testing and other specific inspections.
- Safe use of Bed Rails
- Bed rails are both work equipment and medical devices. All staff working with bed rails must attend training on their safe use to avoid entrapment of the resident.
- Slips, Trips and Falls
- The majority of workplace injuries in Care Homes occur as a result of slips, trips and falls.
The probability of a resident taking a fall rises where they have reduced eye sight, are on medication and or have limited mobility.
Floor coverings in kitchens and bathrooms should be slip-resistant.
Spillages should be cleaned immediately; pedestrian traffic routes kept clean and clear of obstructions and cleaned floors must not be left wet.
To help residents walk safely staff must observe if residents are wearing the correct footwear.
In addition to the responsibilities Care Home employers have to their employees, they are also responsible for the health & safety of residents, volunteers, work experience personnel, visitors and contract employees working on the premises.
- Falls from Height
- Falls from height may be from windows, balconies or stairs and can result in serious or fatal injuries.
There are three broad categories of falls –
These can occur when a person is sitting on a window sill, leaning out of a window, or where the sill or banister height is low and acts as a pivot, allowing them to fall. Other contributing factors can be reduced mental capacity, mental disorder, or alcohol and drugs, both prescribed and illegal.
Falls arising out of confused mental state
Many reported accidents involve residents in either a temporary or permanent confused mental state, often caused by senility or dementia, reduced mental capacity, mental disorder, or alcohol and drugs both prescribed and illegal.
- Hazardous Substances, Infections and Diseases
- Care Homes must assess the health risk faced by employees, residents and visitors, to prevent or control exposure to hazardous substances.
The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH) require employers to prevent or control exposure to hazardous substances (including chemicals, dust, fumes, micro-organisms) at work. This duty applies to employees, residents, visitors etc.
Hazardous substances used in care homes include cleaning materials, disinfectants and micro-organisms associated with clinical waste or soiled laundry.
- Legionnaires’ disease is a potentially fatal form of pneumonia.
It is normally contracted by inhaling tiny, airborne droplets containing viable legionella bacteria. Although everyone is susceptible to infection, the risk increases with age and some people are at a higher risk, such as people over 45, smokers, heavy drinkers, people suffering from chronic respiratory or kidney disease, diabetes, lung and heart disease and anyone with an impaired immune system. Residents in Care Homes are likely to be particularly vulnerable and a scheme of control should be implemented.
Key points to consider
- Asses the risks and put place a sufficient scheme of control.
- Appoint a competent person to manage the risk from legionella.
- Ensure that the water system remains clean, at the correct temperatures and there is no stagnation of water.
- Temperature checks and controls should conform to HSE guidance.
- Hot water and surfaces
- Residents with reduced mental capacity or temperature sensitivity, and people who cannot react appropriately, or quickly enough to prevent injury may face risks from hot water or surfaces.
Water temperatures should be restricted to 44°C where whole body immersion can occur – bathing, showering to prevent serious injury or fatality from scalds.
Serious injury can occur where there is contact with surfaces above 43°C. This can occur when residents fall and cannot move due to their lack of mobility, or are trapped by furniture against the hot surface.
- Work-related violence and aggression
- Both staff and residents have a right to expect a safe and secure environment. In the social sector incidents involving violence and aggression are one of the biggest causes of injuries reported under RIDDOR.
- Work-related Stress
- Stress is ‘the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them at work.’Pressure keeps us motivated and productive. But too much or sustained pressure can lead to stress, which undermines performance, is costly to employers, and can damage both physical and mental health.
Work-related stress can result in high staff turnover, an increase in sickness absence, reduced work performance, poor timekeeping and complaints.
- General Working Environment
- Care Homes aim to provide a homely and welcoming environment for their residents but providers must also comply with workplace law.
- General Welfare
- Care Homes should provide a homely environment while safeguarding the welfare of employees.
Key points to consider
- Make sure staff welfare is taken into account.
- If smoking is permitted aim to reduce second hand smoke exposure.
- Record your compliance with working time limits.
- Consider any risks to new and expectant mothers.
- Are an adequate number of first-aid kits and trained first aiders available?
To discuss how Arinite can help please contact us on 0207 947 9581 and ask to speak with: