MOP(S) Act Employees’ Workplaces: A mix of low and high risk
MOP(S) Act employees carry out their work in a variety of workplaces, from electorate offices, to PPVs, Parliament House and public spaces. MOP(S) Act employees should therefore be aware that their health and safety risks may fluctuate according to their work environment.
FAOs need to first identify potential causes of workplace injury and illness, before assessing the risk of workplace injury and illness, and deciding what first aid response is required. First aid processes, equipment and training status within each office should be reviewed by the FAO quarterly.
To aid in this workplace specific process, Finance recommends using Safe Work Australia’s First Aid and the Risk Management Process.
High risk workplace means a workplace where workers are exposed to hazards that could result in serious injury or illness and would require first aid. Examples of workplaces that may be considered high risk are ones in which workers are exposed to the risk of physical violence (for example, working alone at night or dealing with physically aggressive members of the public).
Low risk workplace means a workplace where workers are not exposed to hazards that could result in serious injury or illness.
Standard Precautions for Infection Control
FAOs should take standard precautions to avoid becoming ill and exposing others to illness when handling blood or body substances. Standard precautions are work practices that are applied to all patients and their blood and body substances, regardless of their infectious status, to ensure a basic level of infection prevention and control. Standard precautions include hand hygiene, use of personal protective equipment, appropriate handling and disposal of sharps and waste, cleaning techniques and managing spills of blood and body substances.
Providing First Aid Safely
Before providing first aid to an injured or ill person, FAOs should assume they could be exposed to infection. FAOs should wash their hands with soap and water or apply alcohol-based hand rub before and after administering first aid. FAOs should also wear personal protective equipment to prevent contact with blood and body substances, including disposable gloves. Eye protection, a mask and protective clothing may also be necessary if splashes of blood or body substances are likely to occur.
FAOs should be aware of what to do if they have accidental contact with blood or body substances, a sharps injury or contact with a person known to have a contagious illness. Any part of the body that comes in contact with blood or body substances should be washed with soap and water immediately. Prompt medical advice should be obtained.
|Safe Work Australia’s First Aid and the Risk Management Process|
|Step 1||Identify potential causes of workplace injury and illness.
|Step 2||Assess the risk of workplace injury and illness
|Step 3||What first aid is required?
First aid kits and procedures
First aid facilities
|Step 4||Review first aid to ensure effectiveness.|
All items that are soiled with blood or body substances should be placed in plastic bags and tied securely. Waste disposal should comply with any state or local government requirements. Sharps, including scissors and tweezers, that have become contaminated with blood or body substances should be disposed of in a rigid-walled, puncture-resistant sharps container by the person that used them.
If an FAO sustains a sharps injury or thinks they are at risk of infection from blood or bodily fluid contamination, they should seek prompt medical advice.
Cleaning by FAOs should commence as soon as possible after an incident involving blood or body substances has occurred. The local office cleaner should be notified, using the usual process for communicating with the cleaner, of any spills involving blood or body substances. FAOs should wear disposable gloves when cleaning spills and if splashes of blood or body substances may occur, additional protective equipment such as eye protection, plastic aprons and masks should be worn. Surfaces that have been contaminated with blood or body substances should be wiped with paper towelling and cleaned with warm soapy water. It is generally unnecessary to use sodium hypochlorite (chlorine bleach) for managing spills, but it may be used in specific circumstances, for example if the surface is hard to clean.