As an employer, few things are more worrisome than when one of your employees gets injured on the job.
Not only is this devastating for the employee, but it also leaves you wondering what steps you need to take to handle the situation properly and make sure your employee gets the care and support they need.
Ultimately, what to do when an employee is injured comes down to having the right processes and protections in place ahead of time.
When it comes to workplace injuries, being proactive is crucial. The first thing you need to have in place is workers’ compensation insurance, which will help pay for any medical expenses and lost wages.
You’ll also want clear procedures outlined so all employees understand what to do if an accident occurs. Formalizing notification channels and having designated contacts for reporting incidents can streamline response times.
Of course, even with preventative measures, accidents and injuries still happen. So what should you do when faced with this difficult situation? Here is a step-by-step guide:
Provide Immediate Assistance
The first priority is making sure the injured employee gets prompt medical attention. Depending on the severity of the injury, this could be administering first aid, calling an ambulance, or arranging transportation to urgent care. That is why it is very important that each if your employees should undergo training for first aid and cpr to be fully prepared.
Secure and Document the Scene
After ensuring your employee’s safety, take steps to secure the accident scene. Cordon off dangerous areas and make sure no one else can get hurt. If you can, document what you observe through photographs and written descriptions. This creates an accurate record of the incident that could be valuable during any investigation or insurance claim processing.
Report the Incident
Notify leadership and file an internal report detailing when, where and how the injury occurred. Most businesses have standardized forms for reporting workplace accidents and injuries. Be sure to follow all such procedures promptly and thoroughly. The report creates a paper trail and alerts key personnel that an employee is hurt and needs support.
Comply with Health and Safety Regulations
Depending on where you operate, certain health and safety regulations may apply regarding reporting and recording occupational injuries and illnesses. Make sure you comply fully with any such requirements, including notifying specified governmental agencies about the incident within mandated timeframes. Non-compliance can result in heavy fines and other penalties down the road.
Connect the Employee with Workers’ Compensation Benefits
For qualifying workplace injuries, workers’ compensation insurance should cover much of the related medical care and recovery costs. Work closely with your insurance provider to file the appropriate claim paperwork and help the injured employee access these benefits. Your HR department can assist with the required filings and coordinate time off or temporary light-duty arrangements.
Follow Up After the Incident
In the days and weeks following the injury, check in regularly with the employee to monitor their recovery progress and see if any additional support is needed. Once they return to work, continue providing accommodations if required, and be alert for any signs they may be struggling physically or emotionally after the trauma.
What to Do When an Employee Is Injured: Final Thoughts
While dealing with workplace injuries is never easy, knowing what to do when an employee is injured is crucial. As well, staying calm, focused, and empathetic as the situation unfolds will give your employees confidence that you have their well-being at heart.