Factors influencing occupational health and safety practices in the private hospitals in Mombasa Island
The objectives of the research were to determine the factors that influence occupational safety and health practices at the private hospital in Mombasa Island, the contribution of health and safety measures of working environment and also assess the impact of work environment as on working conditions and the effects of health care workers and to develop a theoretical framework to explain relationships involved. The importance of health and safety is demonstrated by the cost of compliance in terms of job related injuries and workers compensation as well as absence from duty. The study has explored how to improve the attitudes towards safety by both the administration and the employees. It has identified health and safety practices, current situation and preventive measures that should be taken to improve the situation. The success by any organization depends largely on the constant reinforcement and review of health and safety measures. The virtual aspect is to keep the employees' health and safety. The research involved review of literature on occupational health and safety from various books which concluded that effective health and safety policy and programs are vital and a legal requirement for any organization with more than five employees. The study involved various statistical analyses on both secondary and primary data obtained from three hospitals in Mombasa Island whose bed capacity is more than eighty. Qualitative data was obtained from about 50% of the staff in each hospital using a self administered questionnaire followed by a proportionate stratified sampling to ensure representation of all cadres since the population is heterogeneous. lnlerview and observation guide were also used during the study. The result of the study demonstrates that there is adequate provision of facilities in the hospitals. However there are no health and safety programs in place .The hospitals do not have a clear strategy and commitment to health and safety. It was also established that the environment and ergonomics is also good in those hospitals. In addition it was found out thee most of the employees are literate and hence could read and understand safety rules and regulations, but majority have not undergone any training. It was also established that the hospitals do not keep records of accidents and no investigation on causes of accidents were kept if any occurred. The research recommends that training of health and safety should be mandatory at recruitment and when risk change. This can be done through seminars, workshops, meetings and on job training. The management should ensure provision of enough protective equipment, devices and clothing to safeguard against hazard and ill health. The research makes suggestion that a similar study is conducted in government aided hospitals and also a risk assessment is carried out in the private hospitals.