It might not be apparent, but many perils lurk around the workplace. Employees might crash into glass doors, slip on newly mopped floors, or trip down a flight of stairs, just to name a few disastrous instances.
When these unfortunate circumstances occur, you, as the employer, have the responsibility of handling the situation—something often easier said than done. Primary Care Associates, an urgent care medical clinic in Anchorage that also provides occupational health services, offers the following advice to business owners:
Emergency Room or Urgent Care?
Your first and most important task is to get medical treatment for your employee. Begin by assessing the severity of the injury. If there is profuse bleeding, loss of consciousness, or difficulty in breathing, rush the person to an emergency room as soon as possible or call 911 to request an ambulance. If the injuries do not seem life threatening—like a sprain, for instance—it might be better to send your worker to nearby Anchorage urgent care clinics that provide occupational health services. Choosing this option in moderate circumstances can help to save money on medical costs.
Emotions run high right after an accident occurs, and the employee will often be very upset or even angry over what happened. Talk to your worker in a calm, assuring manner and do not let the conversation escalate into a confrontation. If this cannot be avoided, hear out the employee and try to answer his or her questions as best as you can.
Notify Superiors and HR Departments
As this article from the Houston Chronicle states, it is vital to inform supervisors, managers, and the human resources department about the incident:
In the event of a workplace accident, the injured employee’s immediate supervisor and the company’s human resources department require notification within a specified period, such as one business day. The HR department will alert the employee to seek care from a specific hospital or doctor who is affiliated with the organization’s workers’ compensation program. Besides urgent care, any care rendered by a non-affiliated provider, in regards to the workplace accident, may not be covered under the employer’s worker’s compensation program. The HR department can assist in finding care and providing required authorization of care forms.
Prevent Secondary Accidents
After evacuating the injured employee, restrict access to the area where the injury occurred to prevent further accidents from happening. For instance, if a slip-and-fall incident occurred, people who wander into the area might slip themselves, so be sure to cordon it off to be safe.
(Source: On the Job Employee Accident Response Procedures, Chron.com)