Employers worldwide need to start taking their responsibilities more seriously after the pandemic. This isn’t to say that the management isn’t doing a good job; instead, a lot of attention and care must be given to the general work environment.
You have a professional, moral and legal obligation to provide your employees with a clean, and safe working condition throughout the contractual agreement.
However, there are far too many employers who don’t care less about their workers and expose them to hazardous substances on the job.
This article will look at various factors for managing and preventing occupational diseases. So, if things do go south, you can handle the situation as it escalates.
Preventing harmful exposure
If you work in an industry where exposure to harmful chemicals is part of the job, you must warn the employees before assigning them a task.
Moreover, you need to provide them with relevant gear and equipment to ensure they don’t contract chemical-based illnesses such as asbestos exposure.
Mesothelioma is one of the most common illnesses and can cause lung cancer in the exposed population. Moreover, prolonged and severe exposure can cause a condition called malignant pleural mesothelioma, a more complicated variant of the traditional form of terminal cancer.
If your employees have already come into contact with asbestos, it is best to come clean and own up to it.
Consider covering the medical bills as best as you can because ignoring it or denying the allegations will cause legal implications to stick with you for the rest of your life.
So don’t sweep it under the rug. These people looked up to you for safety and security, and you need to address the fact that you let them down and help rectify the situation before you run into issues with the law.
Ensuring standard operating procedures in case of emergency
Smoke and dust inhalation is one of the most harmful things you can put your lungs through. Freak accidents rarely occur, but you need to realize how important it is to be prepared for situations like this.
Evacuation drills are a must, and you need to know how to get out of the building swiftly and safely. The longer you stay in a burning building, the more susceptible you are to fire and lung damage.
The responders of September 9/11 suffered irreparable lung damage for as long as 15 years after the disaster. Many firefighters lost their lives much later due to the long-term effects of smoke inhalation.
Lung diseases and compromised immune systems are factors that could take away precious years of your life. Please ensure that your office has efficient and adequate emergency evacuation plans in place. Failure to do so could get you sued in the future.
Giving days off when they need it
Far too many employers think their employees are overreacting and don’t give them time off when they need it. However, studies show that employees rarely abuse their days off and mostly call in sick when they really need to.
Not getting days off when they need it can cause adverse health issues that could have long-term effects on physical and mental well-being.
Moreover, bringing sick people into the office creates a general contagious environment that can wreak havoc on the working population.
The more you pressure employees, the sicker they’ll get. Furthermore, if you don’t grant people days off despite being ill, they could take you to the union and cite complaints against the company.
Since we live in the 21st century, we should know the effects of overworking our employees. It would be best if you paid attention to your workers’ demands, met them halfway, and made things easier for yourself and them.
Acknowledging mental health issues
If you think diseases are only physical, you have another thing coming. Mental health illnesses sometimes have even more profound implications because, in some cases, job stress can make a person opt out of life entirely.
As an employer, you don’t want something like that coming back on the company’s name. Depression, anxiety, and overall stress have physical manifestations that can ruin a person’s life if they aren’t careful.
Please don’t take mental health issues lightly; they can be extremely harmful in some cases.
It would be best to offer your employees insurance plans covering mental health issues. Moreover, you can generally tell when someone is going through something, and it would be best to engage them and talk to them about whatever is bothering them.
Just remember not to overstep your boundaries and respect their privacy when they need to draw the line.
It’s a global pandemic; we need to take the necessary precautions to get out of this time and ensure that the virus doesn’t spread further. One of the best ways to prevent the disease from spreading in the office is by encouraging the staff to use hand sanitizers frequently and wear face masks at all times.
Non-compliance can be met with negative sanctions and reprimanding behavior. You would think that most of us know how to behave after living through a pandemic for years now, but the reality Is different.
As a person in authority, you need to enforce COVID-19 SOP’s to ensure that the virus doesn’t spread within the office.
It would be hard to conduct business with several staff members missing. Deliver COVID-19 awareness seminars and get things running smoothly and safely.
There we have it, some of the best ways to prevent and manage illnesses and diseases in the workplace. You need to remember that even something as trivial as the common cold can have significant implications for the business you’re running.
The factors mentioned above could go a long way in preventing diseases in the workplace and generally make for a safer and healthier environment.