Explain three different ways of promoting good health and safety practice in an adult social care setting.

Good health and safety practice can be promoted in an adult social care setting in many ways.

Encouraging everybody (including service users, staff and visitors) to report any potential and actual hazards that they encounter promptly means that the environment can be made safer quicker.

Explaining to everybody that is their responsibility to ensure that they take reasonable care to ensure the health and safety of themselves and others can help them to understand that health and safety should be taken seriously by all. Also, it should be explained that it is their responsibility to follow health and safety policies and procedures.

All staff should be advised that it is their legal responsibility to attend health and safety training and management should ensure that they are given opportunities to do this.

Explain the different stages of a risk assessment.

The different stages of a risk assessment are:

  1. Identify Hazards – You could be actively looking for potential hazards or simply notice something that could be potentially hazardous whilst carrying out your day-to-day activities.
  2. Assessing Risks – Having identified a hazard, you must then make an assessment of what risks to people’s safety it could cause.
  3. Take Precautions – Decide what actions will prevent or minimise the risks.
  4. Document – Record the hazards, risks and actions on a risk assessment form along with any procedures.
  5. Review – Regularly review the risk assessment to keep it in line with current legislation and working practices and record any changes.

Explain why it is important to assess health and safety risks.

It is important to assess health and safety risks to prevent or minimise hazards that could potentially cause illness or injury. This protects all individuals from harm as much as is reasonably possible.

In addition, health and safety risks must be assessed to comply with legislation and company policies and procedures.

Explain the procedure to be followed in the event of an accident or sudden illness.

In the event of an accident or sudden illness, the individual should be assessed immediately and first aid administered if necessary and the first responders have adequate training. The person responding to the accident or sudden illness should also shout for help from others and ask them to call the emergency services, if required.

When the individual is stable, management should be informed as well as the individual’s next of kin. Management should notify HSE and CQC if possible.

As soon as is viably possible, the accident or sudden illness should be recorded on an Accident/Incident Form.

Describe three types of accidents or sudden illnesses that may occur in a social care settings.

Despite the best laid plans and risk assessments, sometimes accidents and sudden illnesses do occur in a social care setting.

An individual may accidentally pour boiling water over their hand whilst making a cup of tea and scald their skin or not cook their food correctly and get food poisoning.  They may also trip and fall down the stairs or have a cardiac arrest or stroke.

Evaluate the effectiveness of three different strategies for managing stress.

Stress can be managed in many ways.

Very often, simply talking to someone about you feel can alleviate the stress. This could be in the form of offloading worries to a loved one or explaining to your manager why you will be unable to meet a deadline. This is a simple, yet effective, way to manage stress.

Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or meditation can be a useful way to combat stress as it allows you to take time to relax, reflect on the problems internally and maybe come up with some solutions. Again this is easy to do but can also be very effective.

Going on a stress management course can help you to learn techniques to manage your stress more effectively. Although it may be useful in the long term, this would not help with any immediate stresses as you would have to wait until the date of the training.

Describe two examples of circumstances or situations that cause you to feel stressed.

I tend to feel stressed if I am overloaded with work (both personal and vocational) and can see no way of meeting my deadlines.

I also feel stressed if I have inadvertently upset my girlfriend or one of my children.

Describe three common signs or indicators of stress.

There are several signs or indicators that yourself or somebody else is suffering from stress.

It may be a change in eating or sleeping habits, such as a loss of appetite, overeating, being tired all the time or insomnia.

Changes in characteristics, such as being easily irritated, getting angry for no tangible reason or having a lack of motivation can suggest that somebody is stressed.

Oversensitivity or tearfulness is another sign of stress.

Explain the potential consequences of not following food safety standards in social care setting.

James is 19 years old; he lives with his parents, twice a week he goes bowling or to the cinema with his support workers. They also go with him to the local college where he is studying Horticulture. At his last care planning meeting James expressed a wish to live independently with someone of his own age. His mother is against any change; she has dedicated her life to caring for him since he was diagnosed as having Asperger’s Syndrome. She is particularly worried that James will be at risk because he has limited experience of living independently. She is concerned he will make himself ill because he has limited experience of general health and safety in the kitchen and has no understanding about food safety. She will not discuss it with James or the social care workers. James is very angry with her.   

If food safety standards are not followed correctly in a social care setting, individuals could be put at risk of serious illness from infection or food poisoning. This can include vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps and dehydration. This poses a risk not only to the individual that that didn’t follow the standards but also their support workers and any other people that they reside with.

It could result in the person’s family being worried or anxious about their loved one and may cause them to seek legal recourse or want to remove the individual from the social care setting.

Support workers may feel guilt and staff morale could be lowered.

If an individual is unable to go to work, this could lead to financial implications or they may not be able to partake in an activity they have been looking forward to (such as a holiday) because of their illness.

As touched upon above it could lead to legal action against the service provider as legislation would have been contravened as well as company policies and procedures. This could also lead to disciplinary action and potential dismissal of employees.

Food Safety: Using the table below, explain how James should:

James is 19 years old; he lives with his parents, twice a week he goes bowling or to the cinema with his support workers. They also go with him to the local college where he is studying Horticulture. At his last care planning meeting James expressed a wish to live independently with someone of his own age. His mother is against any change; she has dedicated her life to caring for him since he was diagnosed as having Asperger’s Syndrome. She is particularly worried that James will be at risk because he has limited experience of living independently. She is concerned he will make himself ill because he has limited experience of general health and safety in the kitchen and has no understanding about food safety. She will not discuss it with James or the social care workers. James is very angry with her.   

 

Store food safely
Read the labels on food packaging to identify how it should be stored (fridge, freezer, cupboard etc.)

Store raw meat and poultry on the bottom shelf of the fridge.

Cover and date any leftover food and wait for it to cool before putting in the fridge.

Handle food safely
Wash hands thoroughly before handling food.

Ensure work surfaces are clean and tidy.

Ensure cooking utensils are clean.

Use the correct utensils for the food type (e.g. colour-coded chopping boards and knives)

Cook food at the correct temperature.

Ensure food is cooked thoroughly before serving.

Dispose of food safely
Clean up any mess or spillages quickly.

Put all food that is past its use-by date into the bin.

Empty the bin regularly.

Describe the main points of food safety in social care setting.

James is 19 years old; he lives with his parents, twice a week he goes bowling or to the cinema with his support workers. They also go with him to the local college where he is studying Horticulture. At his last care planning meeting James expressed a wish to live independently with someone of his own age. His mother is against any change; she has dedicated her life to caring for him since he was diagnosed as having Asperger’s Syndrome. She is particularly worried that James will be at risk because he has limited experience of living independently. She is concerned he will make himself ill because he has limited experience of general health and safety in the kitchen and has no understanding about food safety. She will not discuss it with James or the social care workers. James is very angry with her.   

Legislation and company policies are used to ensure that food is handled safely in a social care setting as well as promoting good practices to minimise risk of harm and illness.

Food should be stored correctly as indicated by the packaging. Chilled foods should go in the fridge, frozen foods in the freezer and other foods in cupboards. Fridge food should be kept on the correct shelves (for example, raw meat should be kept on the bottom shelf in case drips cross-contaminate food below it). Leftover food should be cooled before transferring it to the fridge or freezer and covered and labelled with the date. The fridge and freezer should also be set to the correct temperatures.

A good level of hygiene should be practiced when preparing food, which includes washing hands using correct methods and washing between handling different types of food. All utensils and work surfaces should be clean and different utensils used for different food types (e.g. a red chopping board for raw meat, a green chopping board for vegetables etc.) Any spillages should be cleaned up quickly.

Food that has gone out of date should be disposed of quickly and bins emptied regularly.

Food should be cooked at the correct temperature and should be checked that it is thoroughly cooked before serving.

Explain how a risk assessment might help address dilemmas between James’s rights and the health and safety concerns expressed by his mother.

James is 19 years old; he lives with his parents, twice a week he goes bowling or to the cinema with his support workers. They also go with him to the local college where he is studying Horticulture. At his last care planning meeting James expressed a wish to live independently with someone of his own age. His mother is against any change; she has dedicated her life to caring for him since he was diagnosed as having Asperger’s Syndrome. She is particularly worried that James will be at risk because he has limited experience of living independently. She is concerned he will make himself ill because he has limited experience of general health and safety in the kitchen and has no understanding about food safety. She will not discuss it with James or the social care workers. James is very angry with her.   

A risk assessment will identify any potential risks to James’ health and safety and put procedures and action plans in place to minimise them.

All individuals have the right to take risks and explaining this to James’ mother along with the purpose of the risk assessment may help her to understand that she is causing a barrier to his independence.

Creating a risk assessment in partnership with an individual, their family, support staff and other professionals can help everybody to understand the risks involved in an activity and can highlight potential risks that may not have previously been considered. It would make James and his mother aware of the risks and allow them to develop strategies to reduce the risk as much as possible, whilst also allowing James to exercise his right to be independent. It will also help James to understand the responsibilities he will have for the safety of himself and others.

Having developed solutions to minimise potential risks, the risk assessment should be written up and reviewed on a regular basis to identify any changes that need to be made.

Health & Safety Induction Presentation

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE PRESENTATION: 306 Task A Health & Safety Presentation

You have been asked to contribute to an induction day for new staff. You are to prepare a presentation about Health and Safety. It must include the following:

Ai A list of the key legislation relating to health and safety in a social care setting.

Aii An explanation of how health and safety policies and procedures protect people using social care settings.

Aiii An explanation of how health and safety policies and procedures protect people who work in social care settings.

Aiv A comparison of the differences in the main health and safety responsibilities
of each of the following:
a) Social care worker
b) Employer/ manager
c) Individuals using social care services and others in the setting, such as
 visitors, supporters, volunteer or contractors.

Av An example of a situation where responsibility for health and safety lies with
the individual receiving care.

Avi An explanation of why each of the following tasks should only be carried out
with specific training and the potential consequences if undertaken by staff that are not trained.
a) Use of equipment
b) First aid
c) Medication
d) Assisting moving and handling
e) Emergency procedures
f) Food handling and preparation.

Avii An explanation of the procedures to be followed to prevent and in the event of each of the following:
a) Fire
b) Gas leak
c) Floods
d) Intruding
e) Security breach

Aviii An explanation about the importance of having an emergency plan in place to deal with unforeseen circumstances.

Aix An explanation of how you could encourage others to follow procedures in place for environmental safety.

Ax An explanation of how you could access additional support and information relating to health and safety.

Diploma Health & Safety Handout 3: Hazardous Substances

You have been asked to prepare three hand outs for new staff attending an induction. The hand outs are to provide information on the following topics.

This hand out must include:

Cvi A description of:
a) The types of hazardous substances that may be found in social care settings.
b) The main points of the procedures for handling medication.

Cvii An explanation of:
 a) Safe practices for storing, using and disposing of hazardous substances, including medication, safely.
b) The dangers associated with not following safe practices.

HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES

for Inductees

This handout provides information to new staff about the importance of controlling hazardous substances.

Types of Hazardous Substances

There are several types of hazardous substances that may be found in a social care setting.

Medication may be beneficial to an individual but can be harmful if taken by others that have not been prescribed it, so it must be controlled.

Bodily fluids (urine, semen etc.) can be harmful to others, especially if it is from somebody with an illness or infection.

Some substances, such as bleach or paint, are toxic which means they are poisonous to humans. Other substances, such as detergent, can be an irritant which means it can cause itching soreness and discomfort.

Handling Medication

Medication should be handled in line with legislation and company policies and procedures.

Support staff should ensure that medication is ordered ahead of time and when received the name, dosage and amount should be recorded along with whom the medication is for. It should then be stored in a locked drawer or according to manufacturer’s instructions. Weekly drug stock checks should be performed.

When administering medication, it should be recorded on a MAR sheet. Hands should be washed thoroughly before administering medication and if direct contact is needed then gloves should be worn. The individual, medication, dosage, time and any special instructions should be checked before administration.

If medication is no longer required, it should be returned to the pharmacy and an inventory of what has been returned should be signed by the pharmacist.

Safe Practices

Hazardous substances should be stored, used and disposed of according to the manufacturer’s instructions, which can be found on the packaging.

They should only be stored in their correct and labelled containers, and ideally in a secure area.

You should always read the label before using a hazardous substance and some substances may only be used by someone with relevant training. Personal Protective Equipment should be used where necessary and substances should not be mixed.

Any problems should be reported immediately.

Dangers

If safe practices are not followed correctly, it can result in serious harm, illness or death to yourself or others.

In addition, it would contravene legislation and company policies and procedures, which could lead to disciplinary action, dismissal and potential legal action against you.

It may also result in others using hazardous substances incorrectly.

Diploma Health & Safety Handout 2: Infection Control

You have been asked to prepare three hand outs for new staff attending an induction. The hand outs are to provide information on the following topics.

Hand out 2 – Infection control

This hand out must include:

Ciii  A description of the different routes through which infection can get into the body.

Civ   An explanation of:
a) Prevention methods including hand washing, the social care workers and other’s personal hygiene.
b) The social care workers role in supporting others to promote best practice in infection control.

Cv An evaluation of:
a) Different types of personal protective equipment (PPE).
b) How using PPE can help to prevent the spread of infection.

INFECTION CONTROL

for Inductees

This handout provides information to new staff about the importance of infection control.

Routes of Infection

Infections can enter the body via several different routes:

  • Respiratory – pathogens in the air are breathed into the lungs
  • Breaks in skin – pathogens enter the bloodstream through the skin via cuts, needle pricks, insect bites etc.
  • Digestive tract – pathogens are ingested in food or drink (or other items that go into the mouth)
  • Bodily fluids – pathogens enter the body via bodily fluids (e.g. semen during sexual intercourse)

Prevention

Infection can be prevented by maintaining a high level of hygiene.

This means washing hands thoroughly and regularly and always before handling food or medication.

The workplace should be kept clean and tidy and surfaces cleaned with antibacterial wipes or spray. Toilets and sinks should be cleaned with bleach regularly.

Food should be stored correctly and thrown away when it has gone past its use-by date. Bins should be emptied regularly.

Legislation should be adhered to (COSHH, RIDDOR etc.) and illness should be prevented from spreading by using tissues when coughing or sneezing and avoiding close contact.

A social care worker also has the responsibility to promote best practices for hygiene to their colleagues and other individuals in the service setting to prevent the risk of infection. This can mean encouraging individuals to maintain a high level of hygiene (reminding them to wash their hands after going to the toilet, prompting them to clean their kitchen etc.)

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

PPE is used to protect individuals from potential infection by creating a protective barrier between people and pathogens.

Types of PPE include:

  • Gloves – protect the hands from picking up pathogens and spreading them via touch
  • Aprons – prevents pathogens being transferred via clothing
  • Masks – prevents pathogens being breathed into the lungs
  • Hair nets – prevents contamination via hair.

Diploma Health & Safety Handout 1: Moving & Handling

You have been asked to prepare three hand outs for new staff attending an induction. The hand outs are to provide information on the following topics.

Hand out 1 – Moving and handling

This hand out must include:

Ci   A description of the main points of health and safety legislation that relates to moving and handling.

Cii Explanations of:
a) How following principles for safe moving and handling protects those in social care setting from injury or harm.
b) The consequences of not following an individual’s care plan or engaging with them when assisting moving and handling.
c) Situations that may require additional supports necessary for safer moving and handling.

MOVING & HANDLING

for Inductees

This handout provides information to new staff about the importance of moving and handling correctly.

Legislation

As well as the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999, there is additional legislation governing moving and handling.

The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992/2002 explains how to avoid, assess and reduce risk of injury from manual handling.

The Lifting Operations & Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 is a code of practice that applies to the use of lifting equipment.

Purpose

The purpose of this legislation together with company policies is to protect everybody from harm or injury that could be caused from incorrect moving and handling.

By following the principles of safe moving and handling you will minimise risk of injury, be able to identify potential hazards and work with others to develop safer ways of working, which will protect everybody in your setting. You will also be able to identify areas where you or others may need additional training, such as how to use a piece of equipment safely.

Consequences

If you do not follow an individual’s care plan or do not engage with them when assisting moving and handling, you could cause harm or injury to them or yourself. This could also lead to disciplinary action, dismissal or legal action.

Their care plan has been meticulously written to ensure that procedures are carried out in the safest way possible and cutting corners increase the risk of harm.

If you do not work in partnership with the individual in assisted moving/handling, they will not know what it is that you are doing and what they can do to help. It can also cause them anxiety. All individuals have the right to be involved in all aspects of their care and to have their needs and preferences respected. Failure to do so can result in a breakdown of the relationship you have with them and their refusal to work with you as well as it being against the law.

Additional Support

Certain situations may require additional support for moving and handling from others or from equipment.

Some items may be too heavy to move easily or too bulky, awkward or unstable.

The environment may be cramped or have insufficient room to manoeuvre.

You may not have the correct equipment, the equipment may not work correctly or you have not had the training to use the equipment.