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Health & Safety Policy

Our Health & Safety Policy is to provide and maintain safe and healthy working conditions, equipment and systems of work for all our employees and to provide the training and supervision needed for this purpose.  The practice will take all reasonable steps to maintain premises, equipment and work systems so that they are safe and without risk to health.  All appropriate regulations and codes of practice will be observed.  Employees also have a responsibility to take care of the health and safety of themselves and of others.

Points to note 

 
Responsibilities 

Dr Daljit Sohal is responsible for health and safety in the practice and all accidents and spillages must be reported to either person.  The Practice Manager is responsible for training staff in all health and safety matters, and you should ask them for help if you are in any doubt about using materials or equipment. 

Accidents 

Report all accidents (including spillages and sharps injuries) to either principal immediately, whether or not they involve personal injury.  The practice first-aid box is in the reception area. 

General Fire Safety 

The fire extinguisher and fire alarms are maintained and tested.  Fire extinguishers are sited in the waiting room and by the X-ray developing room.

Hygiene 

Maintain rigorous personal hygiene.  Surgery staff must wear surgical gloves before handling any instruments or materials to be used in the mouth. All substances that have been in contact with the mouth must be assumed to be contaminated and either sterilised or disposed of as instructed.  Contaminated needles and sharps are to be disposed of in designated containers; heavy duty “kitchen type” gloves must be worn when handling them and every precaution taken to avoid injury.

Hazards 

All substances used in the practice must be handled carefully and care taken to avoid skin contact, inhalation or ingestion.

Personal protection

Full use must be made of the clothing, gloves, masks and glasses provided.

Electrical equipment

Never touch electrical equipment with wet hands.  In the event of a malfunction disconnect at the mains supply. 

Machinery 

Never use machinery unless you have been instructed in its safe use.  Make no attempt to dismantle, repair or service machinery without instruction.

Pressure vessels

Compressors and autoclaves are periodically inspected.  They must not be used by anyone who is unfamiliar with their safe operation. 

Radiographs 

The practice complies with the 1985 and 1988 Ionising Radiation Regulations.  Equipment must be operated in accordance with the local rules.  Appropriate training will be given and only trained staff must use the equipment.  Always stand at least 1.5 metres away from and behind the X-ray tube when radiographs are being taken. 

Some likely hazards 

The following list of areas where hazards could arise, or where improvements might be possible, is to help employees in the identification of risks: 

Premises – access, steps, stairs, floor coverings, passages, lighting, furniture, heating, ventilation, fires, fire precautions

Surgery – handling / storage of materials, instruments and equipment (e.g. radiographs, autoclaves, compressors), disposal of waste

General – protective clothing, electrical safety, maintenance of equipment, storage of materials, first aid 

We have a COSHH file which contains a list of all materials held at the practice and the hazards that may be encountered.  All staff must familiarise themselves with this. 

Review of policy 

The policy will be kept up to date, particularly as the practice introduces new materials and equipment.  To ensure this, the policy and the way in which it has operated will be reviewed annually, and practice meetings held regularly to discuss interim problems.