Improving safety for lone workers: a guide for managers

Health Safety and Wellbeing Partnership Group
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This document outlines what employers and managers should do to improve the personal safety of lone workers. An increasing number of health and social care staff work alone in community settings such as patients’ homes or on outreach work. Lone workers can be vulnerable and at increased risk of physical or verbal abuse and harassment from patients, clients, their relatives or members of the public simply because they don’t have the immediate support of colleagues or security staff. The document outlines what staff need to do in order to take reasonable care of themselves and to cooperate with their employer, including: report incidents; attend training; follow the lone worker policy and procedures; assess the risks to their personal safety; and make use of their lone worker devices. Line managers have a duty to ensure that all relevant policies and procedures are implemented and passed on to the lone working staff they are responsible for, including: carrying out risk assessments of any work-related activities that present a risk to staff personal safety; prevention and eliminating the hazard; ensuring that lone workers receive sufficient training and advice, that any necessary physical measures are put in place and that appropriate technology is available; provide the necessary support and advice if an incident occurs; sharing information about incidents or near misses; and providing training, supervision and monitoring. (Edited publisher abstract)

Subject terms:
staff management, safety, training, risk assessment, health professionals, care workers, managers;
Content type:
practice guidance
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