Hazards and Legislation health and social care

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In this assignment I will be looking at potential hazards and harms that can be found in a health and care setting. I will also be investigating how legislation, policies and procedures relate to health, safety and security and in what way they influence health and social care. I will be explaining how legislation, policies and procedures are used to promote health, safety and security of individuals in health and social care workplaces.

P2 & M1.

Legislation, policies and procedures are put in place to protect the public. Legislation is a set of laws that is made by the government; we have laws to keep people safe and to be able to give them rights. Laws have a standardisation; it’s the same rules for everyone, we see the laws as a guideline it helps us know from right to wrong.

Laws are always changing and new ones are continuously put in place. If the law is broken, the person will be punished this can include; getting fined, losing a job, prison sentence and shut down of restaurant. If there were not any laws people would not be able to speak out about their rights, they would not know how to respond to an issue or a problem. There would also be no safety laws for work settings as well as no protection from abuse.

Laws help promote the health, safety and security of individuals; employers are responsible for the health and safety of employees as well as any visitors that are on the premises. Employers must fill out a risk assessment before opening for business; this has to be updated on a daily base. They need to have a health and safety policy that is specifically written for that setting, as well as have someone responsible for health and safety.

Employers must keep records of accidents and incidents this can help see if there are any issues with anything such as a lose flooring or any repairs needed with staircases. Employers must also be able to provide safety equipment, written health and safety information and training. Lastly employers need to make sure that the work place has been insured, employer’s need to take liability insurance. This is in case of the business either being in fault or has an accident. (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 101)

“Policies are a document that explains expected standards.” (Edexcel 2010, p.106) Most polices can be long and can include formal legal jargon. Polices have to be observed frequently to make sure that staff, guests and service users remain safe. Procedures are instructions on how you should fulfil out a task.  Read what is challenging behavior in health and social care

All employers need to have their own health and safety policies and procedures this will show that they operate under the law “The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 states that organisations must have a health and safety policy”. (Edexcel 2010, p.107) When the manager and senior staff are writing out the policy and procedures, they need to be able to understand the law themselves, as well insure that staff follows the procedures so they do not break the law. Most organisations have a number of different policies and procedures such as fire evacuation, food safety and safeguarding. (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 106/107)

When a person is beginning a new job, they must sign out a contract which will have all the policy’s written out on it, the contract will require them to follow out all the policies and procedures. Staff that decide not to follow polices should be trained to do so, they can also be disciplined for overlooking health and safety and may also be sacked.

Policies and procedures help promote heath safety and security of individuals by making sure that all policies and procedures are put in place to meet the legal requirement for health and safety. The managers of an organisation take the responsibilities on behalf of the employees to ensure that the organisation is safe for the benefit of the staff, users and visitors. (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 107) The working place needs to be fully insured and an employer’s Compulsory Liability insurance is essential to have. This is because if the company is found to be in fault of an accident that has occurred, compensation would have to be paid. Employers have to carry out risk assessments and ensure that all staff are well- trained and receive the training they require.

There are many jobs in the health sector that promote the heath safety and security of individuals. This includes professional staff such as a nurse or social worker, care assistants and youth workers. All these workers need to follow policies and procedures to ensure the health and safety of their colleagues and those they are caring for. “It is easy for care workers to cut corners.” (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 108) Many vulnerable people are not usually able to complain if procedures are not followed out.

Laws (Regulations) In Health and Social Care

Data Protection Act 1998 (Policy from James Lee Nursery School)

The reason that there is a policy for James Lee Nursery would be to maintain the confidentiality of the children and staff. The policy will ensure that the nursery treats personal information lawfully and correctly. The policy will protect information from unauthorised access. The data protection act 1998 relates to personal information held in paper and electronic format. This policy comes from the data protection regulation act 1998.

The nursery needs to collect and use certain types of information about staff, students and any other individual that comes into contact with the school. It is by lawful reasons to collect and use certain types of information to comply with statutory obligations of Local Education Authorities, government agencies and other bodies. All personal data collected by the nursery which relate to the staff, pupils or other people who have been contacted will be held on a computer or in paper files.

The Data protection Act 1998 says “information obtained should be for lawful reasons and should be accurate and current information should never be shared with an unauthorised person”. The nursery collects relevant personal data, the people are informed of the data intended use and any possible disclosures of the information that may be made. The data is stored in a secure and safe manner with a standard password protection on electronic data and firewall operated systems. When the school is requested by the telephone to receive personal data disclosure it becomes the responsibility of the school to ensure that the caller is who they say they are. Proof may need to be shown.

The data protection law helps promote the health, safety and security of others as it maintains the confidentiality of the children, keeping their information and personal details as safe as possible, as well as the staff. Another way that the data protection law helps promote the health, safety and security of others would be the policy will ensure that the nursery treats personal information lawfully and correctly.

Food safety Act 1990 and Food Safety Regulations 1995 (The Northern health and social care Trust Ward Patient Food Regeneration & service Policy

The reason that this policy has been written for the ward patient food would be that the nurses need to know how to handle food. The policy prevents food poisoning and contamination of food. This policy comes from the food safety act 1990 and food regulations 1995.

The policy includes the general food hygiene regulation from 1995. The policy includes a variety of appropriate methods that must be followed such as the following; “frequent hand washing in accordance with infection control guidance using liquid soap and hot water when handling, or serving food, mainly on entering the kitchen after:” (The Northern health and social care Trust Ward Patient Food Regeneration & service Policy )

* Visiting the toilet

* Coughing or sneezing

* Touching face or hair

* Cleaning or touching cleaning chemicals and their containers or cleaning materials; and having direct contact with a patient/client

* Hand washing should only be carried out in hand washing basin and never in a sink used for cleaning food or equipment

* Cuts, burns and sores should always be covered with blue waterproof dressing

The policy also states that any of the staff must report any illness to the manager, illnesses such as the following; vomiting, diarrhoea, septic discharges from the ears, eyes or nose and if they are a carrier of food poisoning illnesses. This policy comes from the 1995 food safety regulations “anyone suffering from an infection such as vomiting and diarrhoea, should not have any dealings with food preparations.” (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 103).

The policy also includes weekly ward kitchen inspections where the ward manager must take part in when possible to ensure that the appropriate remedial action is taken to action agreed by the inspection team. The food safety act 1990 “gives powers to the environmental health inspectors to inspect food. Any establishment breaking the food hygiene standards will be served a notice of improvement.”

The food act regulations help promote the health, safety and security of individuals in the trust ward as they need to maintain hygiene. The food act declares “food areas must be kept clean and a good standard of hygiene must be maintained”. This would be by wearing green disposable protective aprons during the service of all meals and beverages, aprons must always be used for this purpose. Another way that food act regulations can be encouraged would be all food refrigerated food must be checked daily, all food with before dates must be disposed of appropriately.

Fire and Emergency Evacuation Policy (Nursery)

The reason that the fire emergency evacuation policy has been written is to ensure the safety of all the staff and children at the nursery. The policy makes sure that all procedures are followed out as they should be. This policy comes from the fire precautions regulation 1997.

The policy confirms that all fire equipment and alarm systems are maintained and inspected yearly by the fire protection service, the certificates of the inspection should be displayed on the main notice boards. The fire precaution regulation 1997 says “premises should always provide fire fighting equipment, fit fire detectors, alarms and emergency lighting”. The policy mentions having regular checks, the Fire Marshall must tests all smoke detectors and fire alarms every week and records these in the fire log as well as making sure that the batteries that need to be replaced are changed straight away. “Carry out, monitor and review a fire risk assessment.”

The policy also includes a section on fire and emergency evacuation practices, it says that the practise should be carried out every half term and when new members of staff join. The Fire Marshall should schedule practices into the nursery diary, as well as call the alarm for practise to cover different times and situations throughout the nursery day. Lastly the policy mentions that fire drills with detail and comments should be carefully recorded in the fire safety log and the nursery dairy. The fire precaution regulation 1997 says that “staff should know information about risks and training in the fire prevention and emergency procedures.”

Lastly the policy states about the emergency evacuation procedures. Class registers should be completed daily and kept in wall pockets at all times so they can be instantly available during emergency evacuation practises or in the event of a real fire. Upon alert the Fire Marshall should contact the deputy, and collect the nursery registration file from the main house, as well as get extra staff to assist with the evacuation.

All room leaders should take their register and lead the children out of the nursery to the nearest exist, class groups will met at the assembly point ensuring that gates are closed to maintain their safety. Room assistants need to check their rooms and toilet areas to make sure that all the children have left the building safely. The Fire Marshall needs to make the final check of the building making sure everyone has left. The fire regulation 1997 says that “ensure that there are clear signed routes of escape, planned emergency and nominated fire officers.”

The fire and emergency evacuation policy helps promote the healthy, safety and security of individuals in the nursery as it ensures that the staff and Fire Marshall understand what to do in the situation. The policy makes sure that there are regular checks this will benefit on the safety of individuals as the fire equipment will be provided as well as the fire alarm to aware people. Another way that the fire and emergency evacuation policy helps promote the health, safety and individuals would be that there are emergency evacuation practices, this ensures that everyone will know where to go in case of a real life situation. Lastly the Fire Marshall will make a final check to make sure everyone is out safely, this promotes the safety and security of others.

Manual handling Operation Regulation 1992

The manual handling operation would be written for the people working in either a hospital or any other work base which requires manual handling.

The manual handling regulation says that employees should avoid manual handling operations that involve a risk of injury. They should take steps to reduce the risk of injuries during when the operation cannot be avoided. Employees should be encouraged to do everything safe as possible. They should use lifting aids in hospitals when people cannot move independently, all lifting needs to be safe as possible.

When lifting you the manual handling operation regulation says that; you should avoid twisting your body, lifting from the floor, you must keep the load close to the body and avoid repetitive lifts. ((Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 103).

Manual handling regulation helps promote health, safety and security of individuals in a heath and care setting as it prevents employees from having an injury and badly hurting themselves. Another way that it helps promote the safety of individuals would be that it will give the employee the chance to have training before handling anything, this gives them the confidence they need as well as encouragement. Lastly manual handling regulation helps promote the health, safety and security of others as it has made employees understand not to lift anything heavy, and to instead use lifting aids when not able to move objects independently.

Control of substances hazards to heath (COSHH) 2002

The control of substances hazards to heath would be written for employees who are around hazardous substances, the regulation ensures that staff are well trained and supervised. The regulation will ensure that heath surveillance is carried out if any of the employees are near harmful substances during their work. The control of substances makes sure that employees access the risks of hazardous substances such as body fluid and sharp objects. They have procedures to prevent exposure to hazardous substances. The regulation prepares plans to deal with accidents, incident or emergencies and to ensure that all procedures are followed. (Health and social care 2010, Book 1 level 3 Edexcel, page 105)

Control of substances helps to promote the health, safety and security of others in health and social as many professionals maybe around hazardous substances, by knowing COSHH they will understand how to prevent or control the exposure. Another way it helps to promote would be that it helps identify early signs of diseases. Lastly it helps promote the safety of others in health and social as employers need to prepare plans on how to deal with someone’s accident, incidents and emergencies.

Reporting of injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences regulation (RIDDOR) 1995

The Reporting of injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences regulation would be written for the local council to be able to have an understanding of how and where and why risks occur. This helps the council investigate serious accidents and the near accidents. The regulation includes the reporting of the following to the local council or health and safety executive;

* Death or major injuries

* Incident leading to why someone has been absent from work for three or more days

* Reportable diseases

* Dangerous occurrences such as fire, electrical short circuit and needle stick injures. Etc.

By reporting the injuries it will help promote the health, safety and security of others as local councils will obtain an investigation of serious and near accidents. They will then advise the company on how to prevent or reduce the injury. Another way that it can promote the health and safety would be that it will enable the local council to find out why, where and how the risk occurred.

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