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AlbertaHealthServices

StrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety



December2010







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A.INTRODUCTION

InCanada,approximately25.8millionpeopleareemployedinfullorparttimeworkandtheaveragefulltime
workerspendsapproximatelyonethirdoftheiradultlifeonthejob1.Thus,theworkplaceisahighlyinfluential
yetoftenunderestimateddeterminantofanindividualshealthstatus.Infact,manydeterminantsofpersonal
healthandsafetyworkingconditions,income,socialstatus,education,personalhealthpractices,social
supportnetworksandphysicalandculturalsupportsaredirectlyrelatedtooccupationandinterconnect
withintheworkplacesetting2.

TheCanadianhealthandsocialservicessectoremploysoneoutofeverytenworkersinourcountrybut
unfortunately,healthsectoremployeesareabsentfromworkasaresultofillnessordisabilitymorethanany
otherworkerinCanada3.TheAlbertaHealthServices(AHS)StrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety
(WHS)thereforeaimstooptimizethesafety,health,productivityandwellbeingofallAHSemployeesby
generatingboththeconditionsandthemotivationneededtopositivelyinfluenceawiderangeofhealth
determinants.Thisdocumentoutlinesthethreestrategiccomponentsthatformthefoundationofthe
WorkplaceHealthandSafetyfiveyearplan:culture,theworkplacehealthandsafetymanagementsystemand
resources.

Thereisagrowingbodyofevidenceoutlininghowworkplacehealthandsafetyconditionsaredirectly
associatedwiththequalityofpatientcare.Acomprehensiveandcollaborativesystemwideapproachto
promotingaclimateofhealthandsafetywithinoccupationalandorganizationalfactorsisthebestwayto
improvethehealthcareworkenvironmentandtherebypatientsafety4.Developingaholisticapproachto
employeeandorganizationalhealth,wellbeingandproductivitywillstrengthentheconnectionbetweena
safe,engagedworkforceandsafe,highqualitypatientcare.

AccordingtoGovernmentofAlbertastatistics5,thehealthindustryhasoneofthelowestperformingsafety
recordsacrossallemploymentmarketsinCanada.In2009,thelosttimeclaimrateforthehealthservices
industriesinAlbertawas3.14per100personyearsworkedyettheaveragerateforallsectorsintheprovince
wasonly1.69per100personyearsworked.Inthatsameyear,thedurationrateforhealthcarewas53days
lostper100personyearsworkedcomparedtotheprovincialaverageofonly40dayslost.Furthermore,the
healthsystemdisablinginjuryratewas3.84per100personyearsworkedwhereasthecrosssectoraverage
wasonly3.09.Finally,longtermcareservicesexperiencedthehighestlosttimeclaimanddisablinginjuryrates
at4.88and6.45per100personyearsworkedrespectively.Inlightofthesediscouragingstatistics,AHS
leadershiphasbeenaskedtoestablishandaimforasubstantialorganizationalgoal:zeroinjuries.

1
StatisticsCanada(2005).LabourForceSurvey.http://www40.statcan.ca/l01/cst01/labor07a.htm.Accessed14July2010.
2
PublicHealthAgencyofCanada.(2001).DeterminantsofHealth.http://www.phacaspc.gc.ca/ph
sp/determinants/indexeng.php#determinants.Accessed14July2010.
3
QualityWorkplaceQualityHealthcareCollaborative.(2007).WithinOurGrasp:AHealthyWorkplaceActionStrategyfor
SuccessandSustainabilityinCanadasHealthcareSystem.http://www.qwqhc.ca/docs/2007QWQHCWithinOurGrasp.pdf
(p.5)Accessed14July2010.
4Yassi,A.,&Hancock,T.(2005)Patientworkersafety:Buildingacultureofsafetytoimprovehealthcareworkerand
patientwellbeing.HealthcareQuarterly,8,3238.
5
GovernementofAlberta.(2010).OccupationalInjuries&DiseasesinAlberta:LostTimeClaims,DisablingInjuryClaims&
ClaimRates.HealthServicesIndustries2005to2009.http://www.employment.alberta.ca/document/WHS/WHSPUBoid
health.pdfAccessed26November2010.
2

B.ALBERTAHEALTHSERVICESSTRATEGICPLANFORWORKPLACEHEALTHANDSAFETY

AccordingtotheConferenceBoardofCanada:

Organizationsthatprovideahealthyworkplacearealsomoreattractivetoprospectiveemployees.Top
talentislookingforemployersofchoiceandthemajorityofemployersthatfallintothiscategoryput
anemphasisonbuildinghealthyworkenvironments6.

TheAlbertaHealthServicesStrategicDirection20092012acknowledgesthatoneoftodaysmostcomplex
healthcarechallengesistheabilitytoattract,retainandsupportaresilientworkforcewhocancontinueto
deliverqualityhealthcareintothefuture.Thus,becomingaWorkplaceofChoiceisoneoftheorganizations
eightkeyAreasofFocus7.Afundamentalactionwithinthisareaistocreateaworkenvironmentthatpromotes
safetyandwellnessinordertoreducerisksofphysicalorpsychologicalinjuryandtoimprovestaffand
physicianjobsatisfaction.

TheAlbertaHealthServices2010StrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafetyestablishesWorkplaceof
ChoiceasthemostrelevantAreaofFocusforthepeoplecentricdisciplinesinhealth,safety,ability
managementandwellness.ThenatureofWHScorebusinessundoubtedlycarriesthemostdirectandpositive
impactonemployeesandworkplaceenvironments.WHSiscommittedtoleadingacomprehensivesystems
approachthatpromotesaclimateofhealthandsafetyacrossAHSbyaddressingcriticalworkplacefactorssuch
asphysicalandpsychologicalhazards.Thus,implementingaWorkplaceHealthandSafetyStrategicPlanisan
essentialmeanstohelpguidethecreationofaculturethatrecognizespeopleasitsmostvaluableresource.
However,itisequallyimportanttonotehowthecontributionsofWHSalsoextendbeyondpeopleandplaces
tosupportotherorganizationalpriorities(seeAppendix1).

ThethreecomponentsoftheAlbertaHealthServices2010StrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety
focusonculture,systemsandresources.Inthiscontext,cultureisdefinedastheunderlyingbeliefsystems
aboutworkplacehealthandsafetythatarelargelydeterminedbygroupnorms.Thecultureistheproductof
individualandgroupvalues,attitudes,perceptionsandpatternsofbehaviourthatdemonstratethe
organizationalcommitmenttoworkplacehealthandsafety.TheWorkplaceHealthandSafetyManagement
Systemoutlinestheorganizationalstructure,responsibilities,practices,procedures,processes,resourcesand
behavioursneededtoimplementtheAHSWorkplaceHealthandSafetyPolicyandassociatedobjectivesand
targets.Itisalsodesignedtosupporttheorganizationshealthandsafetyinformationmanagement
requirementstominimizehealthandsafetyrisksandtomonitorandreporthealthandsafetyimpactsfromall
aspectsofthebusiness.Finally,theenablingresourcesandstructureareintendedtoalignWHSprofessionals
acrosstheorganizationsotheycanenhanceserviceandfacilitatefurtherdevelopmentofhealth,safetyand
wellnesscompetenceamongleaders.

Thefollowingsectionsprovidemoredetailoneachindividualcomponentofthestrategicplan.

C.COMPONENTONE:CULTUREANDCLIMATETHEWHOHEALTHYWORKPLACEMODEL

In2010,theWorldHealthOrganization(WHO)designedaglobalHealthyWorkplaceFrameworkandModelto
helpcompaniesinterpretandapplytheoverabundanceofinformationonhowtooptimizeworkplacehealth,
safetyandwellness.WHOsaimistoprovide:

6
ConferenceBoardofCanada.(2010).BeyondBenefits:CreatingaCultureofHealthandWellnessinCanadian
Organizations.(p.2).
7
AlbertaHealthServices.(2009).AlbertaHealthServicesStrategicDirection20092012:DefiningOurFocus/Measuring
OurProgress.http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/org/ahsorgstrategicdirection.pdfAccessed10July2010.
3


aflexible,evidencebasedframeworkforhealthyworkplacesthatcanbeappliedbyemployersand
workersincollaboration,regardlessofthesectororsizeoftheenterprise,thedegreeofdevelopmentof
thecountry,ortheregulatoryorculturalbackgroundinthecountry8.

DuetotheWHOsrigorousexaminationofglobalapproaches,scientificresearchandevidenceinformed
practices,AHShaschosentodrawonthemajorconceptsofthisframeworktosupporttheconceptualizationof
theworkplacehealthandsafetycultureandtheimplementationoftheStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealth
andSafety.BoththemodelandtheframeworklendthemselveswelltoanAHSspecificinterpretationandcan
beadaptedtodevelopaholisticapproachtoemployeeandworkplacehealth,safety,productivityandwell
being.Withinthisculturalframework,WHSprofessionalscanimplementtheWorkplaceHealthandSafety
ManagementSystem.

TheHealthyWorkplaceModeldepictsavisualconceptualizationoftherelationshipbetweenallthecore
elementsoftheStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafetythatarerequiredtoensuresuccessand
sustainability:values,foundationalspheresofwellbeing,engagementofkeystakeholders,continual
improvementprocessesandthehealthsystem.

8
Burton,J./WorldHealthOrganization.(2010).WHOHealthyWorkplaceFrameworkandModel:Backgroundand
SupportingLiteratureandPractices.http://www.who.int/topics/mental_health/en/Accessed10July2010.
4


C1Values


AHShasestablishedfourcorevaluestodriveandsustainallactivitiesofthe
organization:respect,accountability,transparencyandengagement9.TheStrategic
PlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafetyhasthereforeadoptedthesevaluestodirect
thedesign,implementationandevaluationofallassociatedprograms,servicesand
initiatives.


C2FoundationalSpheresofSafetyandWellbeing


Toachieveandmaintainasafeandhealthyworkenvironment,itisessentialto
addressthediverseandcomplexissuesthatimpactthewellbeingofemployees
inthehealthcareworkplace.TheWHOHealthyWorkplaceFrameworkandModel
categorizestheseissuesintothefollowingfourmajorspheres:

1. thephysicalworkenvironment
2. thepsychosocialworkenvironment
3. personalhealthresources
4. organizationalcontribution

Theelementswithineachofthesefourareasoutlinethesubstancerequiredforthedevelopmentof
meaningfulhealth,safety,abilityandwellnessworkplaceinitiatives,programsandservices.Inpractice,eachof
thesesphereswillofteninfluence,intersectoroverlapwithoneormoreoftheremainingspheresdepending
onvariablessuchascontext,occupationalroleandworksite.AHSwillprioritizethefocuswithineachofthese
spheresbasedonregularneedsassessments,datacollection,measurementandevaluationprocessesallin
consultationwithemployeesandotherkeystakeholders.


PhysicalWorkEnvironment

Thephysicalworkenvironmentconsistsofthoseelementsintheworkplace
whichdirectlyimpactthehumansensesandthephysicalormentalsafetyand
wellbeingofanemployee.Manyhazardsinthephysicalsurroundingsposean
immediatethreatofbodilyoremotionalinjurywhileotherenvironmental
conditionsinfluenceworkerhealthmoregraduallyovertime.Thisarenais
traditionallythepurviewofoccupationalhealthandsafetyorhealthpolicyand
legislation,yetitalsoincludesbroaderconditionssuchasworkplace
opportunitiestoimproveormaintainfitnesslevels,trynewleisureactivitiesor
developmeaningfulsocialconnection.

9
AlbertaHealthServices.(2009).AlbertaHealthServicesStrategicDirection20092012:DefiningOurFocus/Measuring
OurProgress.http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/org/ahsorgstrategicdirection.pdfAccessed10July2010.
5


Keycategoriesandexamplesofworkplacehealth,safetyandwellnessissuesinthephysicalenvironment
include:

1. chemical: solvents;tobaccosmoke 2. mechanical: machinehazards;usageoftools



3. biological: communicablediseases;poor 4. transportation: inclementweather;poorvehicle
hygienepractices maintenance

5. physical: noise;heat 6. energy: electrical

7. ergonomic: heavylifting;repetitiveaction 8. built accesstosafeexerciseandleisure
environment: opportunities;outdooreatingareas

9. technology: unsafeuseofmobileequipment 10. fitness,leisure, socialeatingareas;fitnessclasses;
andtechnologies social: groupevents


PsychosocialWorkEnvironment

Thepsychosocialenvironmentencompassesthoseaspectsofboththe
workplaceandtheworkitselfwhichimpactanemployeespsychologicaland
socialfunctioning.Suchissuesaretypicallysimplifiedtoworkplacestressand
forgoodreason:stressisconsistentlycitedastheleadinghealthriskdriving
theimplementationofwellnessinitiativesinmostareasoftheworld10.
However,psychosocialmattersalsoinvolvethebroaderandcomplexissuesof
organizationalculture,socialconnectedness,jobdesign,roleclarity,
workload,recognition,fairness,creativeexpressionandfinally,asenseof
purposeandmeaningfulcontributionthroughwork.Thus,thephysical,emotionalandspiritualsafetyandwell
beingofanemployeeissignificantlyinfluencedbytheoverallattitudes,values,beliefsandpracticesthatare
demonstratedonadailybasiswithintheorganization.

Withinthegrowingbodyofworkplaceresearch,thereissubstantialevidencetosupportthepsychosocial
impactofworkonthephysicalandemotionalwellbeingofemployees.Inparticular,thenotionof
psychologicalsafetyisgainingsignificantgroundinCanadaasameanstopreventmentalinjury.A
psychologicallysafeworkplaceisonethatallowsnosignificantharmtoemployeementalhealthinnegligent,
recklessorintentionalwaysthroughthepurposefulbehaviours,commentsoromissionsofemployersor
colleagues11.Mentalinjuryisdefinedasthesubsequentimpairmenttopsychologicalhealththatresultsfrom
suchactsandfrequentlyleadstoachronicinabilitytofunctionasusualatworkorathome12.Current
estimatesofthecostofmentalinjurytoCanadianemployersrangefrom$8billionto$11billionperyeardue
tolostproductivity,absenteeism,presenteeism,shorttermdisability,longtermdisability,retrainingandlegal
expenses13.

10
BuckConsultants.(2009).WorkingWell:AGlobalSurveyofHealthPromotionandWorkplaceWellnessStrategies.
http://www.worldatwork.org/waw/adimLink?id=36309Accessed10July2010.
11
Shain,M.(2009).PsychologicalSafetyatWork:EmergenceofaCorporateandSocialAgendainCanada.International
JournalofMentalHealthPromotion,11(3);43.
12
Shain,M.(2009).PsychologicalSafetyatWork:EmergenceofaCorporateandSocialAgendainCanada.International
JournalofMentalHealthPromotion,11(3);43..
13
Shain,M.(2009).PsychologicalSafetyatWork:LegalTrendsandtheImplications.BenefitsandPensionsMonitor.
August;30
6

Keycategoriesandexamplesofworkplacehealth,safetyandwellnessissuesinthepsychosocialenvironment
include:

11. organizationalculture supportforworklife 12. shiftwork: fatigue;pooraccesstohealthy


andpolicy: balance;workplace foodonworksite
violence

13. mentalhealthissues: stigma;lackofworkplace 14. mentalinjury: Bullying;harassment;burnout
awareness fromunrealisticexpectations

15. managementstyle: highdemand,lowreward, 16. joborganization: timepressure;isolation;poor
lowcontrol jobclarityordesign


PersonalHealthResources

ThenumerousworksettingswithinAHSholdconsiderablepotentialtobecome
supportiveenvironmentsthatmotivateandenableemployeestoimprovetheir
ownwellbeingthroughpositiveshiftsinpersonallifestylepracticesand
choices.Theconventionalcorporatewellnessagendafocusesonnutrition,
exerciseandstressmanagement,butotheruniqueprogramsandcreative
partnershipscouldgenerateadditionalopportunitiesthatinspireworkersto
pursuenewavenuestowardsrecoveryofwellbeingandhealingofmind,body
andspirit.

Keycategoriesandexamplesofpersonalhealthresourcesintheworkplaceinclude:

17. workplacewellness fitnessclasses;nutrition 18. healthresources: accesstoinformation


programming: counselling;personal (online,callcentre,print,
training inperson)

19. healthservices: immunizationclinics; 20. healthpolicy: smokefreepolicy;healthy
healthcoaching foodpolicy

21. counsellingservices: employee&family 22. healthprogramming: Bloodandbodyfluid
assistanceprogram; program;immunization
smokingcessation;alcohol standards;fatigue
anddrugs management

23. wellnessresources: accesstomeditation, 24. financialincentives: discountedmembership
guidedimagery,yoga,qi costsforfitness,leisureor
gong;employee&family socialclubs/activities
assistanceprogram

25. creativityprogramming: music;arts;technology; 26. socialprogramming: walkinggroups;group
storytelling;writing outings



OrganizationalContribution

TheAlbertaHealthServices20092012StrategicDirectionidentifies
HealthierCommunitiesasoneoftheorganizationsstrategicpriorities.
BecauseAHSoperateswithinandacrosshundredsoflocationsthroughout
Alberta,thereissignificantopportunitytoexchangeandpromoteemerging
healthandwellnessinformationthatinspiresandsupportswellbeinginthe
broadercommunity.TheAHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety
thereforeaimstosupportAHSsrecommendationtofacilitatepeopleto
understandchoicesandtakeresponsibilityfortheirownhealth14.AHShas
anopportunitytoestablishamentorshippresencesinceitsexpertise,
activitiesandresourcescanhelpimprovethehealth,safetyandwellbeingofworkers,theirfamiliesandtheir
broadersocialandphysicalcommunities.Conversely,theactivities,knowledgeandresourceslocatedwithin
thecommunitiesthemselvescanpositivelyinfluencetheapproachtoworkplacewellbeingwithinthehealth
system.

Keycategoriesandexamplesofcommunityengagementandorganizationalcontributiontooptimizebroader
wellbeingacrosstheprovinceinclude:

27. advocateforhealthy leadthewaywithinternal 28. encourageand approvereasonabletime


publicpolicy: policy(e.g.cellphone supportvolunteer forparticipationin
policy,smokefreepolicy, work: meaningfulvolunteering
healthfoodpolicy)

29. encourage,support biketoworkprogram; 30. collaboratewith healthand/orsafety
andmodelhealthier commuterchallenge externalpartnersto coalitions
formsoftransportto shareexpertise:
work:

C3Advise&Engage:WorkplaceHealth&SafetyEngagementFramework


Advise

AHSwishestoseektheinputofkeystakeholderswhocanhelpidentifythe
relevantandmeaningfulworkplacehealth,safetyandwellnessprioritiesfor
theorganization.Itisessentialtoleveragebothinternalandexternal
expertiseinordertocapturetheinnovativeideas,creativedirectionand
multilevelsupportneededtosustainevolvingandemergingemployeehealth
andwellnessinitiatives.Stakeholdergroupsrangefromemployees,
physiciansandvolunteerstounionsandexecutives.Ofparticularimportance
istheinvolvementoffrontlinestaffandseniormanagementsincethehealth,
safetyandwellnessagendacannotberealizedwithouttheownershipofworkersandtheendorsementof
leadership.

14
AlbertaHealthServices.(2009).AlbertaHealthServicesStrategicDirection20092012:DefiningOurFocus/Measuring
OurProgress.http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/org/ahsorgstrategicdirection.pdf(p.7).Accessed10July2010.
8



Engage

TheAHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafetywillleadtothe
developmentandgrowthofinitiativeswhoseprimarygoalistooptimize
employeesabilitytothriveintheirroles.However,workersmustactively
participateintheseopportunitiesinordertoimproveandprotecttheirwell
being.Hence,AHSiscommittedtoengaginginternalaudienceswhenever
possibletoensurestrategicobjectivesremainrelevant,effectiveand
meaningfultotheworkforce.Keystakeholdersrangefromfrontlineemployees
tomanagerstocontractors.Allgroupswillplayapivotalroleinhelpingto
identify,planandimprovethewaysinwhichtheorganizationcanbettermitigateworkplacerisks.Everyone
playsacentralroleincreatingaculturewhichprotectsandenhanceshealth,safetyandwellbeing.


WHSEngagementFramework

Whereverpossible,thespecificaudiencesimpactedbyahealth,safetyor
wellnessinitiativewillhavetheopportunitytoparticipateinthestrategic
cycle,fromplanningandimplementationtopromotionandevaluation.
However,itisessentialtoapproachsuchcomplexcollaborationinadeliberate
andthoughtfulmanner.Therefore,theWHSEngagementFramework(seeAppendix2)willprovidestructure
anddirectiontotheentirehealth,safetyandwellnessengagementprocess.BesidessupportingoneofAHSs
fourcorevalues,thisframeworkalsoguidesandstrengthensthecommunication,supportivelearningand
relationshipbuildingrequiredamongststakeholderstohelpoptimizeactiveparticipationinworkplacehealth,
safetyandwellnessacrosstheorganization.

C4AlbertaHealthServicesImprovementWay

ThewayinwhichAHSdevelops,improvesandmaintainshealthyworkplace
initiativesisasimportantasthecontentorfocusofthoseinitiatives.Thus,it
iscriticaltofollowacontinualimprovementprocesssystemthatcanensure
thestrategyssustainability,progressionandrelevance.TheAlbertaHealth
ServicesImprovementWay(AIW)isaflexible,enterprisewidemethodthat
guidesallAHSteams,individualsandinitiativestofocustheireffortsand
resolveissuesmoreefficientlyandmoreconsistently.AIWoffersasimple,
cyclicprocesstohelpoutlinethecontinuousdesign,implementation,
evaluationandmodificationofallprograms,servicesandactivitieswithin
thehealth,safetyandwellnessagenda.Thefourkeystepsofthemodel
incorporatethetenetsofPDSA,LEAN,SixSigmaandAIMandaredescribed
as:1)defineopportunity,2)buildunderstanding,3)acttoimproveand4)sustainresults15.AIWalsooutlines
thenecessitytomanagechangeandsharelearningthroughouttheprocessandofferstoolsandtechniquesto
identifyandpursuetheappropriateimprovementpath:quickwins,streamlineprocesses,analyticalproblem
resolutionordesigneffort.

15
AlbertaHealthServices.(2010).AHSImprovementWay(AIW).http://insite.albertahealthservices.ca/aiw.aspAccessed
21November2010.
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AHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety


Theworkplacehealthandsafetyobjectivesrelatedtocultureandclimatefor20102012are:

Objectives
Description KPIs Timing
(WeWillStatements)
1. Establishazeroinjury EstablishorganizationalWHS Nov2009
expectationacrossthe performancemetrics. Complete
Defineorganizational organization.
workplacehealthand 2. Establishmeaningfulleadingand DevelopExecutiveCommittee Dec2009
safetypriorities Complete
laggingperformanceindicators. EndorsedWHSStrategy.

3. Setrealisticreductiontargetsfor

workplaceinjuryandillness Benchmarkhistoricalperformance Feb2010
incidentsandnonoccupational andestablishExecutiveCommittee Complete
disabilityandsicktime. approvedperformancetargetsfor
2010/2011.

1. Incorporateourcommitmentto EstablishWHSExecutiveSteering Oct2010
IntegrateWHSintothe WHSintooperationalpolicies, Committeeinplaceformonitoring Complete
corebusinessprocesses practicesandprocedures. theorganizationsperformance,
ofAHS adherencetoplanandcompliance

toapplicablelegislation.

1. EstablishaStakeholderWHS ConductbenchmarkWHS May2010
EngagementandCommunication stakeholderperceptionsurvey. Complete
Program.
2. Conductregularsurveys/focus EstablishaStakeholderWHS Sep2010
Engagestakeholders groupstounderstandstakeholder EngagementandCommunication Complete
perceptionsandneeds. Program.
1. employees
2. physicians 3. CreateaWHScommunications
3. volunteers themethatensuresaconsistent
lookandfeelforWHS
communicationsmaterial.
4. CommunicateWHSmetricsto
stakeholders.

1. CEOtoestablishanddemonstrate EstablishWHSmetricsinsenior Mar2010
aTonefromtheTopconsistent leadershipperformancereviews. complete
withtheorganizationsZero
Injuryexpectation. EstablishaLeadersWHS
EnableLeadership Mar2012
2. IncludeWHSmetricsinsenior CertificationandMentoring

leadershipsperformance Program.

reviews.
3. Empowerlinemanagerstodefine DefineWHSLeadership Jun2010
andactionWHSimprovement Competencies. complete
plansspecifictotheiroperations.
4. Ensurethehealth&safety
leadershipcompetenciesofall
Leaders.

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D.COMPONENTTWO:WORKPLACEHEALTHANDSAFETYMANAGEMENTSYSTEM(WHSMS)

Asnotedintheprecedingsections,AHSrecognizesthatworkershealth,safetyandwellbeingarefundamental
totheprovisionofsafeandhighqualityhealthservices.Theorganizationisthereforecommittedtoproviding
anenvironmentfreefromharmbycreatingandsustainingastrongsafetyculture.Toincreasehealthand
safetyawarenessanddefinehealthandsafetyobjectives,AHSrequiresasystematicapproachandstructure.
TheWHSMSStandardsatisfiesthisrequirementforAHSasitisbaseduponimplementationoftheCanadian
StandardsAssociation(CSA)StandardZ100006.TheWHSMSestablishesbothemployeeandleadership
expectationsanddrivestheorganizationsaccountabilitiesrelatedtoworkplacehealthandsafety.

D1WorkplaceHealthandSafetyPolicy

ThefoundationfortheAHSWHSMSisanorganizationalpolicythatstatesAHSiscommittedtoprovidinga
safeandhealthyworkenvironmentandmanagingitsoperationsinamannerthatprotectsthehealthand
safetyofemployees,physicians,volunteers,patients,residents,clients,thepublicandcontractors.Thepolicy,
approvedinMay2010,goesontolisttheorganizationsbeliefsandcommitmentsrelatedtohealth,safetyand
wellbeing:

Beliefs

1. Thehealth,safetyandwellbeingofourworkersarefundamentaltotheprovisionofsafeandqualityhealth
services.
2. Allworkershavetheresponsibilityfortheirownandtheircoworkershealthandsafety.
3. Allincidentsarepreventable.

Commitments

4. Todonoharm.
5. Toempowerourworkerstocontrolandmitigateworkplaceriskstohelpensurehealthyandsafework
environments.
6. Toensurethatourworkershavethetrainingandresourcesneededtobehealthyandtoworksafely.
7. ToaligntheWHSMStothehigheststandardsofCSAZ1000andimprovethesystemonacontinualbasis.
8. Tomeetorexceedtherequirementsofallapplicablelegislationandrecognizedindustrypractice.
9. Toworkcollaborativelywithallinternalandexternalstakeholders.

D2WorkplaceHealthandSafetyManagementSystem(WHSMS)Standard

AHShasestablishedandwillimplementandmaintainadocumentedWHSMS16inaccordancewiththe
requirementsofCSAZ1000.TheelementsofStandardZ100006willbeintegratedintoallcorebusiness
processesovertimetoensurecontinualimprovementatalllevelsoftheorganization(asnotedinSectionC3).
TheWHSMSStandard(seeAppendix4)specifiesrequirementsforallofAHSandisintendedtoaddress
workplacehealthandsafetyaspectsoftheorganization.

16
AlbertaHealthServices.(2010).WorkplaceHealth&SafetyManagementSystemStandard.
http://insite.albertahealthservices.ca/Files/hrwhswhsmsstandard.pdfAccessed15August2010.

11

ThemainelementsoftheStandardarelistedbelow.ThecompletedocumentisavailabletoallAHSleadersand
staffthroughtheinternalweb.

1. Commitment,leadership,andparticipation
2. Managementcommitmentandleadership
3. Workerparticipation
4. WorkplaceHealthandSafetyPolicy
5. Planning
6. Review
7. Legalandotherrequirements
8. Hazardandriskidentificationandassessment
9. WorkplaceHealthandSafetyobjectivesandtargets
10. Implementation
11. Hazardandriskcontrolmeasures
12. Emergencypreparednessandresponse
13. Competenceandtraining
14. Communicationandawareness
15. Procurementandcontracting
16. Managementofchange
17. Documentation
18. Evaluationandcorrectiveaction
19. General
20. Monitoringandmeasurement
21. Incidentinvestigationandanalysis
22. Internalaudits
23. Preventiveandcorrectiveaction
24. Managementreviewandcontinualimprovement

AHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety

TheworkplacehealthandsafetyobjectivesrelatedtotheWHSMSfor20102012are:

Objectives
(WeWillStatements) Description KPIs Timing
1. Amalgamate,andenhanceas ImplementnewintegratedWHS Mar2012
ImplementaCSA required,existingOHSPrograms softwaresolution.
compliantWHS
intoanewunifiedcorporateWHS
ManagementSystem ManagementSystem. ImplementaCSAZ100006compliant Mar2012

2. Evaluatealloutcomesanddataand WHSManagementSystem.
usethemtoinformthe
developmentofevidencebased
interventions.
3. Replacelegacyhealthandsafety
softwaresolutionswithone
integratedsystem.
ImplementanInternal ImplementanInternalResponsibility Jan2011
ResponsibilitySystemforWHSthat SystemforWHS.
Fosterfrontlinebuyin
andownershipfor
explicitlydefinesthe
accountabilitiesforalllevelsof Establishanadvisorystructureto Completed
workplacehealthand managementandstaff. provideinputonthedevelopment, Oct2010
safety
Establishanadvisorystructureto implementationandmaintenanceof

provideinputonthedevelopment, WHSpolicy,standards,practicesand
implementationandmaintenance procedures .
E.COMPONENTTHREE:ENABLINGRESOURCESANDSTRUCTURE
ofWHSpolicy,standards,practices
andprocedures. 12

E.COMPONENTTHREE:ENABLINGRESOURCESANDSTRUCTURE

E1WHSStructure

Workplacehealth,safety,abilityandwellnessprofessionalsarearesourcetotheorganizationwhoprovide
guidanceinthepreventionofinjury,incidentsandeventsthatharmpeople,propertyortheenvironment.In
addition,itistheroleofWHSprofessionalstodevelopthesystemsupportsthatenablehealthworkersto
optimizetheirhealth,wellnessandproductivitywithintheworksetting.

WHSestablishedaprovincialstructureinJanuary2010(refertohttp://insite.albertahealthservices.ca/WHS.asp
forthemostrecentWHSorganizationalchart).Asoutlinedinthetablebelow,thestructureiscomprisedof
twoarms:WHSProvincial(Corporate)ProgramsandWHSZoneServices.TheroleoftheCorporateTeamsisto
leadthedevelopmentofprograms,practicecodes,guidelinesandprocesseswhiletheroleofthefiveWHS
ServiceTeamsistooperationalizeandimplementprograms,codesandguidelinesconsistentlyacrossthe
organizationoncetheyaredeveloped.


WHSCorporateTeams WHSServiceTeams


AbilityManagement NorthZone
OccupationalSafety EdmontonZone
HealthandWellness CentralZone
OrganizationandEmployeeAwareness CalgaryZone
SouthZone


ThecorebusinessofeachCorporateteamisbrieflydescribedbelow:

AbilityManagement

TheAHSAbilityManagementTeambelievesemployeeabilitiesaremoreimportantthantheirdisabilities.The
appropriateapplicationofthoseabilitiesintheworkplacecontributestobothindividualandorganizational
goalsandhelpsoptimizeemployeesoverallwellbeing.Theabilitymanagementprogramespousesan
integratedapproachofmultidisciplinaryteamstohelpensureAHSemployeesremainengagedandconnected
totheworkplaceinordertofacilitateasafeandtimelyreturntoproductivework.Therearefourmain
componentstotheprogram:

1. occupationalinjury/illnessorWCBprocesses
2. nonoccupationalillness/injuryorshortterm/longtermdisabilityprocesses
3. attendancemanagementprocesses
4. returntoworkprocesses/dutytoaccommodate

OccupationalSafety

TheCorporateOccupationalSafetyTeamprovidessupporttoAHSandWHSServicesthroughanintegrated
approachinthedevelopment,monitoring,evaluationandcontinualimprovementoftheWorkplaceHealthand
SafetyManagementSystem17(WHSMS).TheteamwillinitiatethedevelopmentofPrograms,Processes,
CodesofPracticeandSafeWorkPracticesthroughconsultationofkeystakeholderstomeettherequirements
setbytheCSAZ100006standardforOccupationalHealthandSafetyManagementandwillalsoensure

17
AlbertaHealthServices.(2010).WorkplaceHealth&SafetyManagementSystemStandard.
http://insite.albertahealthservices.ca/Files/hrwhswhsmsstandard.pdfAccessed15August2010.

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compliancewithapplicablelegislationandstandards.TheCorporateOccupationalSafetyteamprovides
specializedconsultationandadviceintheareasofHygiene,Ergonomics,SafeClientHandling,Trainingand
OccupationalHealthandSafety.

Health&Wellness

TheCorporateHealth&WellnessTeamaimstocreateahealthyworkplacethatprotects,promotesand
supportsthephysical,mental,spiritualandsocialwellbeingofallAHSemployees.TheTeamprovides
leadershipinthedevelopment,implementationandevaluationofprovincialprograms,policiesandservices
whichimproveorprotectworkerhealthandwellbeing.Healthandwellnessinitiativesfocusonemployees
complexandinterconnectedneedswithinthephysical,psychosocialandpersonalenvironmentsof
theworkplacesuchasoccupationalhealthrisks,mentalhealthpromotionandaccesstowellness
programming.TheCorporateHealth&WellnessTeamscorebusinessactivitiesareexplainedinmore
detailintheAlbertaHealthServicesWorkplaceHealth&WellnessActionPlan18.

WHSOrganization&EmployeeAwareness

WHShasappointedanOrganizationalEngagementandAwareness(OEA)Teamtodrivetheevolutionof
anAHSworkplacehealth,safetyandwellnessculturethroughstakeholderengagementinvolving
communication,collaboration,supportivelearningandrelationshipbuildingstrategies.Toachievethisgoal,
theteamhasdevelopedtheWHSStakeholderEngagementFramework(seeAppendix2)toprovidestructure
anddirectiontotheentirehealth,safetyandwellnessengagementprocess.TheOEATeamaimstoraise
organizationalawarenessofworkplacehealthandsafetyingeneral,butalsostrivestofamiliarizeemployees
andleadershipwiththecrucialroleofcurrentandemergingWHSservices.Bothofthesegoalsareachieved
throughthedevelopmentoftools,resourcesandprocessesthatsupportWHSStakeholdersinengagement
activitiesorganizationwide.

E2WHSIntegration

AllWHSteamsnotonlycollaboratewithinandacrosstheprovincialandzoneservicecontexts,butalsowith
relevantAHSandexternalstakeholdersinorderto:

Empowerworkerstocontrolandmitigateworkplacerisks
Optimizeworkerswellbeingandtheirabilitytoperformtheirroles
Ensureallworkershavethetrainingandresourcestoworksafely
Meetorexceedapplicablelegislation
Strengthentheorganizationscommitmenttoacultureofhealth,safetyandwellness

TheworkofeachWHSteamismutuallyinfluentialandthecollaborationandintegrationofthediverse
professionalgroupsareessentialtoprovidingtheorganizationwithcomprehensiveandintegratedWHS
services.ThefollowingdiagramdepictsWHSvisionaroundtheintegrationofallitscorecomponentstocreate
aunifiedteamthatprovidescomprehensiveandseamlessservicestotheorganization:

18
AlbertaHealthServices.(2010).WorkplaceHealth&WellnessActionPlan.
http://insite.albertahealthservices.ca/Files/hrwhsnewsactionplan201012.pdfAccessed10October2010.

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AHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealthandSafety

Theworkplacehealthandsafetyobjectivesrelatedtoenablingresourcesandstructurefor20102012
are:

Objectives
Description KPIs Timing
(WeWillStatements)
Establishandmaintaina TransitionthecurrentRegionalOHS Completed
newWHSorganizational TeamstoanewCorporateStructure
structure consistentwithAHSdirection.

DevelopandalignWHSprofessionals DefineWHSRoleDescriptions. Dec2009
intheorganizationtoenhance Complete
EnsurethatWHS
serviceandfacilitatefurther ImplementProfessional
professionalexpertiseis
developmentofworkplacehealth DevelopmentProcessforallWHS Completed
providedtothe andsafetycompetenceamong personnel. Oct2010
organization leaders.

ImplementaWHSsuccessionplan. Sept2011

TransitionthecurrentRegionalOHS Completed
Ensuretheprovisionof
TeamstoanewCorporateStructure
WHSprofessionalstothe
organization consistentwithAHSdirection.























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F.WORKPLACEHEALTHANDSAFETYTRAJECTORYOFINITATIVES20092014

TheAHSStrategicPlanforWorkplaceHealth&Safetywillinitiallybeoperationalizedbythedesignand
implementationofseveralfoundationalhealth,safety,abilityandwellnessinitiativestohelpmeetthemore
urgentneedsoftheneworganization.However,workissimultaneouslyunderwaytodeterminethebest
timingandapproachtorealizeemergingandfrontierprojects.Notethatinboththeemergingandfrontier
areas,developmentalinitiativesmayhavebeeninplaceinformerentities;however,thediagrambelowis
intendedtodepictAHSprojectedtrajectoryfortheimplementationofprovincialprioritiesoverthenext
severalyears.

SolidCircle=implementedornearingimplementation
OpenCircle=ongoingplanningphase

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APPENDIX1:ImpactofWorkplaceHealth&SafetyonAHSAreasofFocus

Area Focus WHSPartnershipInitiative KeyPartners OrganizationalImpact(2012)

1.0ImprovingPopulationHealth
1.1 BurdenofDisease DevelopandimplementtheAHSHealth&Wellness Rural,Publicand Improvedselfreportedhealthstatus
ActionPlan CommunityHealth forHCWs
Implementcomprehensivehealthpromotion (RPCH)
strategiesforhealthcareworkersinAHS

1.2 HealthyCommunities Strengthenpreventionandresponsetohealthrisks Rural,Publicand Targetsachievedinidentified
forhealthcareworkersinAHS CommunityHealth priorityareas:e.g.immunization
AdoptSection1.2forourownAHSpopulation rates

2.0RespondingtoConsumersandCommunities
2.1 PatientExperience Incorporatepatientexperiencemetricsintoall QualityandService Betterunderstandingoftheimpact
healthcareworkersafetyinitiatives Improvement(QSI) ofthesharedhealthcare
Establishlinksbetweenpatientexperienceand environmentontheexperienceof
workersafetysystems workers,patientsandfamilies

3.0LearningandImproving
3.1 LearningfromMistakes Integrateworkplaceincidentsystemintoadverse QSIPatientSafety Integratedincidentresponseand
eventmonitoringanddevelopprocessestosupport managementforAHS
organizationwidelearning

3.2 InfectionPreventionand Optimizeinfectionpreventioncontrolpoliciesand IPC/RPCH ProvincialAHSCommunicable
Control practicesacrosstheprovincetoenhancehealth DiseaseStrategy
careworkerandpatientcareandsafety.
Sharebestpracticesacrosstheorganization

4.0ImprovingAccess
4.3 AddictionandMentalHealth Reducetheharmassociatedwithaddictionsby AddictionandMental Betterunderstandingoftheeffects
strengtheningthepoliciesandsupportsavailableto Health/Unions ofaddictionsintheworkplace
healthcareworkersinAHS Appropriateaddictionspoliciesand
supportsinplace

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5.0 DecreasingWaitTimes
5.0 AllPortfolios Strengthenpolicies,processesandprogramsin Allportfolios Healthierworkforceavailableandfit
earlyintervention,claimsmanagementandreturns forworkonamoreconsistentbasis
toworksothatabsenteeismandinjuriesare Unions
reduced

6.0Fitforthefuture
6.1 BalanceWorkforceSkills Developalearninganddevelopmentprogramin HR AllAHSleaderspossessthe
withNeed workplacehealthandsafetyforAHSfrontline knowledgeandskillstoaddresstheir
leaders AllPortfolios accountabilitiesforhealthandsafety
WorkwithAlbertaEmploymentandImmigration intheworkplace
(AEI),AlbertaHealthandWellness(AHW)and AEI/AHW
educationalinstitutionstointegratehealthand
safetyknowledgeandskillsintothecurriculaof
healthcareworkerprograms

6.3 ResearchCommitment Leadafocusedhealthresearchagendainworkplace Strategyand Betterunderstandingofthelinks


health,safetyandwellness;forexample,linking Performance betweenworkerandpatientsafety
workerhealthandsafetytoimprovedpatient
outcomes

6.4 OpentoInnovation Seekglobalinnovationandimplementbest IT Enhancedworkplacehealth,safety


practicesinworkplacehealth,safetyandwellness andwellnesscultureandpractices
EstablishWHSManagementSystemasa
componentofdecisionsupporttechnology

7.0LivingwithinourMeans
7.1 AdherencetoBudget ReduceoverallcostsoflosstoAHS(conservatively AllPortfolios Reducedoverallcostsoflosstothe
estimatedat$15Mannually)viaprovincial organization
7.2 EliminatingWasteand restructuring,implementationofaCSAcompliant
Duplication WHSManagementSystemandservice
reengineering

8.0WorkplaceofChoice ReferenceAHSStrategyforWorkplaceHealth&Safety

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APPENDIX2:WorkplaceHealth&SafetyStakeholderEngagementFramework

Tooptimizeandsustainactivecommitmenttoacultureofworkplacehealth,safetyandwellness.
Goal

EmployeesManagers/SupervisorsWHSTeamJointHealth&SafetyCommitteesExecutive/AHSBoard
holders
Stake

PhysiciansVolunteersUnionsExternalStakeholders

CORESTRATEGIES
COMPLEMENTARYSTRATEGIES
increasinglevelsofinvolvement

Acknowledge/
Inform Consult Collaborate Empower Promote Connect
Appreciate
Strategies

Toproviderelevantand Toobtainfeedbackand Topartnerwith Tobuildownershipand Toinfluencetarget Tocreateopportunities TocelebrateWHSpractice


timelyinformationto ensureinputis stakeholdersindecision supportinformed audiencestoaccept,reject forsharingandlearning innovationand
assiststakeholdersin incorporatedtothe making,anddevelopment decisionmakinginWHS. ormodifybehavioursin betweenstakeholder achievementonan
understandingWHS maximumextentpossible. ofalternativesand supportofhealthyand groups. individualandteamlevel.
programs,issues, solutions. safeworkpractices
solutionsand/orprogress. throughtheuseofsocial
marketing.

Wewillprovidetimely, Wewillconsultandobtain Wewillpartnerwith Wherelegislation Wewillcreatemeaningful Wewilltapintothe Wewillacknowledgeand


accurateandeasily feedbackensuringinputis stakeholdersinaprocess /authoritypermitwewill messaging/promotions knowledgeand showappreciationfor
understoodinformation incorporatedtothe thatresultinjoint delegatedecisionmaking. throughtheengagement experiencesofour individualandteam
Promise

thatishighlyaccessible. maximumextentpossible. recommendations.Wewill Wewillsupportinformed ofourtargetaudience. stakeholdersandfoster behavioursandsuccesses


Wewilladvisehow advisehowcollaboration decisionmakingby learningfromeachother. thatpromotehealth,
Wewillrespondto consultationsaffected affecteddecisionmaking. providingtraining,tools safetyandwellnessinthe
questionsforclarification. decisionsandoutcomes. andresources. workplace.

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