Back in December, I announced a new focus of our BIDMC SPIRIT program, one directed to solving the problem of employee injuries. I had noticed that we had hundreds of injuries per year, and it occurred to me that we might be able to reduce those using the same tools and approaches we have used so effectively elsewhere.
We set up a reporting system, and we now have a post on our company intranet portal for all to see how many injuries have occurred and what the major categories are. You can see a sample above. We have also tried to adopt the root-cause problem solving methodology to the incidents.
I want to talk about one category here today because we are struggling a bit with how to solve it, and I seek the advice of others among you who may have already done so.
It's that last category above -- exposure to blood and fluids -- which you can see is a persistent problem. In theory, people should wear personal protective equipment (PPE) when there is a chance they will be exposed to blood and other bodily fluids that might fly through the air or otherwise reach them. But this often does not happen. There might be a variety of causes -- improper training, complacency, lack of proximity of equipment when needed, or even a lack of definition of when it is needed. We are currently reviewing all of these factors. If anyone out there has figured out how to ameliorate this problem in your hospital, will you please post your thoughts and suggestions?