Tag: Incident Reporting

How to create a successful and sustainable near miss culture

The importance of establishing a near miss culture is clear. The OSHA and National Safety Council Alliance, a cooperative program, puts it this way: “History has shown repeatedly that most loss producing events (incidents), both serious and catastrophic, were preceded by warnings or near miss incidents. Recognizing and reporting near miss incidents can significantly improve worker safety and enhance an organization’s safety culture.” Effective near miss programs can prevent more serious incidents from occurring.

A previous post highlights some of the challenges surrounding this issue. Fear of reprisal or embarrassment, difficulty in the reporting process, and a sense of futility if reports don’t result in tangible changes. Each challenge presents obstacles when trying to establish a near miss culture.

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Using RMIS technology to improve incident and near miss reporting

Every seven seconds, a worker is injured on the job, totaling 4,500,000 injuries per year. Astounding statistics. The worst part? Many of these injuries are preventable.

Loss reduction efforts and improvements in safe workplace behavior require the cooperation of everyone in an organization. When incidents and near misses aren’t reported, injuries occur that might have been prevented—at a significant cost to injured employees, their families and communities, and their employers. An effective approach to incident management encourages an expansion in the reporting of incidents and near misses by both workers and their supervisors.

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How a RMIS breaks down barriers to effective incident management

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Workplace incidents are far more numerous and costly than most people realize. The National Safety Council estimates that the average cost of a medically consulted injury in 2015 was $31,000. The average cost of a fatality, $1 million. That year, on-the-job injuries numbered approximately 4.4 million. 4,190 on-the-job fatalities were reported.

In many cases, workplace incidents are also entirely preventable. As pointed out in the EHS Today article “Sustainable Safety Management: Incident Management as a Cornerstone for a Successful Safety Culture”, studies show that a significant number of workplace accidents occur “as the consequence of minor lapses, and usually of not just one lapse but the sequence of minor failures. A combination of minor lapses can create a safety gap that can lead to major accidents.”

An effective approach to incident management is one that encourages reporting of all workplace incidents. Risk managers and safety leaders can then draw from that information to identify, analyze, and correct hazards with the goal of preventing future occurrences.

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How a Modern RMIS Can Improve Incident Collection

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Risk Managers and Claims Adjusters know how important it is to collect detailed incident data. Many companies have unstructured collection methods, though, ranging from phone and e-mail to fax and paper. This can lead to inaccurate and inefficient incident data collection, causing challenges that might result in higher claims costs.

A modern RMIS enables clients to easily capture structured data in a manner that is understandable to the field and can include supporting documents and pictures. The key benefits of using a RMIS for incident collection are:

  1. Managing claims earlier
  2. Ability to analyze incidents
  3. Flexibility to change the data collected

All of these benefits can play a part in reducing workers comp litigation as employees can receive communication earlier and companies can better prevent injuries.

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