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Module 4

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Leadership and Safe Work Environments

Note: If you must stop before the end of the course, be sure to remember the module number and section where you stop so you do not have to start the course from the beginning when returning.

Competency: To describe the role of leadership in establishing, applying, and sustaining a safe work environment.


  • Identify how high reliability organizations (HROs) and their leadership support safety principles for staff and patients including resources for safe staffing.
  • Identify key examples of how policies and procedures support safety and health programs.
  • List educational methods for safety that would include hazard analysis and engagement of healthcare workers in safe practices.

To have safe work be a priority in healthcare settings, leadership commitment is essential. Effective leaders contribute to improvements in workplace safety and prioritize safety culture and safety measures every day. This means that hazardous tasks and conditions, exposures, and situations must be recognized and strategies for hazard elimination and control must be developed, implemented, and evaluated. This requires that healthcare workers are engaged in decision-making for solutions to hazard reduction, policies and procedures for safe work are developed and monitored for effectiveness, training is provided regularly, repeated, and updated, and that resources are continuously available and allocated to keep safe work the priority.