Christopher J. Lipowski, CRSP - Principal - Pinnacle Enterprise Canada
Healthcare Occupational Health and Safety

"Committed to Promoting Healthcare Occupational Health and Safety Management Performance Excellence and Achieving Error-Free Safe Patient Care"



Canadian Registered Safety Professional (CRSP) - since 1993


To make meaningful contributions in a collaborative manner for organizations that recognize their human capital as their most valuable asset and is committed towards achieving effective occupational health and safety performance through proactive management system strategies and programs that promote a strong safety culture to reduce occupational accident / disease incidence rates, meet legislative compliance requirements and due diligence, and enhance corporate financial sustainability.


I obtained my diploma in psychology from Loyola College and a bachelors degree in psychology / biology from Concordia University, both in Montreal. After almost two years in the role of Clinical Research Associate, Cardiovascular Division, Sandoz Pharmaceuticals, I went on to work in basic research for three years in the Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, where I was accepted into and attended graduate studies (MSc) Psychiatry (Neuroscience). Under the thesis supervision and guidance of Dr. Roberta Palmour PhD & Dr. Frank Ervin MD, my concept and laboratory research work led to a novel finding that CNS adenosine A1 and A2 receptors are involved in aggressive behavior in an animal model, published in Life Science (1989; 44 (18):1293-301), (Adenosine analogs inhibit fighting in isolated male mice)

Subsequently, I changed career directions and went on to receive training in occupational health and safety through auditing, with the University's permission, the entire McGill University’s graduate School of Occupational Health program. In 1993 I obtained the Canadian Registered Safety Professional (CRSP) designation As the University's first Health and Safety Officer, for over thirteen years I applied my knowledge in psychology towards improving safety management organizational culture and used my training in occupational hygiene to develop innovative programs such as office ergonomics MSD injury prevention / remediation, indoor mould evaluation and control, and academic research laboratory safety inspections. After 17 years service with the University, I left McGill in 2000 and started an occupational health and safety consulting service, Pinnacle Enterprises Canada. For the past sixteen years, I have been foccusing my professional expertise and significant effort in promoting improvements in healthcare occupational health and safety as an important factor that contributes to assuring high quality safe error-free patient care. I developed one of the first healthcare indoor mould control programs in Canada for Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto. I utilize the OHSAS 1800 (soon to be ISO 45001-2018), and CAN/CSA-Z1000-14, standards as proactive instruments for establishing effective management strategies that identify leading safety performance metrics to effectively reduce occupational hazard risks and associated losses. Such progressive actions will achieve safe working conditions for healthcare staff that promote a strong organizational safety cultureand result in sustainable safe patient care and reduced healthcare costs.

From 2009 to 2012, in colaboration with The Ottawa Hospital Environmental Health and Safety Team, I coordinated thier Safety Management System development initiatives based on the CSA Z 1006 standard - including Internal Audit Program that subsequently received a 100% conformity rating in an external audit performed by the Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).

In 2012 I completed the comprehensive Ryerson University, Toronto, Advanced Safety Management Certificate program.

My Healthcare website, Healthcare Safety Info-eLink™ is my personal contribution to the occupational health and safety profession. It emphasizes the need for hospital senior management and associated stakeholders (government agencies) to seriously consider the important link between the quality of healthcare occupational health and safety workplace conditions and practices and its direct impact on patient safety outcomes (medical errors). In order to achieve sustainable administrative performance with meaningful control of healthcare costs, reduction in hospital staff injuries, occupational diseases and patient error are an essential goal. A holistic approach is proposed that manages patient safety and care-provider safety programs together as an integral component of the organization's Health and Safety Management System (HSMS) that strives to identify in a systematic and priortized manner management opportunities for implementing changes that focus on continuous improvement objectives. This type of approach could be attained by implementing a HSMS in accordance with the the provisions of the OHSAS 18001; (ISO 45001 - 2018); or the Canadian Occupational Health and Safety Management Standard: CAN/CSA-Z1000-14 and regularily assessing performance of the HSMS with specific Audit Instruments. In addition, organizational ISO 9001 quality performance standard can be considered and quality improvement tools such as Six Sigma and Lean among others can be utilized to assist in reaching the objective of a effectively functioning HSMS - To reduce care provider injury/disease rates - And provide high quality "safe" patient care.

Four initial basic priorities are necessary for implementing a successful HSMS:

1. Strong organizational ethics;

2. Organizational Senior Leadership that adheres to point # 1 above and values their staff wellbeing; and fully supports a strong occupational health and safety management system;

3. An organization with a positive culture will have strong cohesive team spirit that believes in and supports all levels of its leadership;

4. An effectively managed Human Resources Management department focused on progressive and proactive methods of organizational personnel management and promotes the benefit of a Health and Safety Management System

Safety Culture - The CJL Five Pillars of Attaining Success

1) A high quality well-administered dedicated Organizational Environmental Occupational Health and Safety Department managed by a qualified ethical professional highly skilled and extensively experienced Occupational Health and Safety expert that reports to an "emotionally intelligent" Senior Organizational Safety Leader (e.g. HR VP) that is focused on and striving for successful OHS positive returns on meaningful invested efforts.

2) The EOHS Manager / Leader must possess superior knowledge and skills in Industrial Hygiene, Occupational Health gained through university training in the field. It is insufficient to just have a MBA without formal understanding of the intricate dynamics of industrial hygiene and occupational health.

3) The EOHS Manager / Leader Possess Advanced Comprenhensive Knowledge of Proactive and Progressive Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems Techniques:- safety management systems instrument implementation and audit methodology; modern specialized industrial hygiene technology and professionally recognized acceptable practices; a well-developed comprehension of occupational health topics as well as current standards in infection control and prevention techniques; occupational / environmental toxicology; a firm understanding of organizational psychology theory and its applications, e.g. stress prevention / control, safety culture development, wellness programs.

4) The EOHS Manager / Leader must have a solid comprehensve understanding of OHS legislation and effective application methods to atain organizational compliance / accountability using the concept of the Internal Responsibility System, and maintaining sustaneable organizational due diligence.

5) An Environmental Occupational Health and Safety (EOHS) Department must be structured in such a manner that will require unwavering genuine support and commitment from hospital senior Administration that provides the EOSH Department Management sufficient funding, tools, and all associated resources to accomplish safety goals and objectives. Hiring appropriate number of highly credible properly certified OHS professionals (including individuals possessing appropriate personality traits) for building an effective and progressive team motivated to contribute to move forward unobstructed by Management in a positive direction towards achieving continuous OHS improvement and success for the healthcare organization. As mentioned above, the Organization EOHS Department Leader (e.g. VP of HR) must have strong interpersonal communication skills to be capable of directing a highly proficient EOHS team that abides with organizational priorities, goals and objectives that adheres to the Internal Responsibility System. When sufficient number of OHS professional staff are hired in the EOHS Department to address the major organizational safety needs, the OHS work load is sufficient enough to accomplish without excessive damaging stress the job tasks successfully and in a timely manner. This administrative style prevents "frequent OHS staff turnover" which is very disruptive and a clear evidence indicator of management failure by disregarding the essential requirement for a satisfied and motivated team. Hiring inappropriate low cost OHS contractors that are poorly educated or lack proper training in the profession or hiring staff insufficiently educated or lacking extensive field work experience in OHS is a recepie for disaster as an error made by incompentent OHS personnel can have serious implications for the organization from the legal point of view and more importantly may result in harming staff by providing incorrect OHS information leading one to believe that a particular hazard risk is under control and "safe" when in fact it is not.

The first and fundamental step in the control of hazards is their recognition. For example, a "safety person" who is not adequtely educated nor qualified to perform industrial hygiene monitoring - performs air sampling for formaldehyde exposure in a pathology facility: (Formaldehyde is a nearly colorless gas with a pungent suffocating odor.  It is used as a preservative in a liquid solution that is 37% formaldehyde by weight generally inhibited with 6-12% methyl alcohol. At this concentration the solution is called formalin. Some formalin solutions also contain phenol. Formaldehyde and solutions containing the chemicals are potential human carcinogens, irritants, and chemical sensitizers).

The inexperienced hazard risk assessor may perform the following errors: use of incorrect measuring assessment equipment; does not calibarte the equipment correctly; decides use of personal dosimetery is not required when in fact it may be necessary; selects incorrect dosimeter device; incorrectly adjusts sampling pump settings; assesssing results without consideration of the ACGIH 50% Action Level - (or in the absence of an Action Level, the PEL).

Due to sampling protocol error the assessor upon completion of monitoring may have results that indicate acceptable contaminant levels. However, the conclusion presented may be erroneous and in fact the vapour may be elevated well beyond the PEL, TWA, TLV, STEL, etc. depending on your jurisdiction and legislative permissible exposure requirements. But the sampling report submitted to your EOHS and Senior Management Team states that the area is "safe" to work in, when fact it really is not. It is also important to note the ACGIH Board of Directors state: "Policy Statement on the Uses of TLVs® and BEIs® - The Threshold Limit Values (TLVs®) and Biological Exposure Indices (BEIs®) are developed as guidelines to assist in the control of health hazards. These recommendations or guidelines are intended for use in the practice of industrial hygiene, to be interpreted and applied only by a person trained in this discipline. They are not developed for use as legal standards and ACGIH® does not advocate their use as such. However, it is recognized that in certain circumstances individuals or organizations may wish to make use of these recommendations or guidelines as a supplement to their occupational safety and health program. ACGIH® will not oppose their use in this manner, if the use of TLVs® and BEIs® in these instances will contribute to the overall improvement in worker protection. However, the user must recognize the constraints and limitations subject to their proper use and bear the responsibility for such use. The Introductions to the TLV®/BEI® Book and the TLV®/BEI® Documentation provide the philosophical and practical bases for the uses and limitations of the TLVs® and BEIs®. To extend those uses of the TLVs® and BEIs® to include other applications, such as use without the judgment of an industrial hygienist, application to a different population, development of new exposure/recovery time models, or new effect endpoints, stretches the reliability and even viability of the database for the TLV® or BEI® as evidenced by the individual Documentation. It is not appropriate for individuals or organizations to impose on the TLVs® or the BEIs® their concepts of what the TLVs® or BEIs® should be or how they should be applied or to transfer regulatory standards requirements to the TLVs® or BEIs®." (

Therefore, hiring Qualified Experienced OHS Profesionals is essential in the occupational health and safety field in order to achieve valid hazard risk information and is an integral component of organizational safey practices and safety culture excellence achievement.

The EOHS Team must be knowledgble, experienced and supportive of Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems including Audit Procedures as it is well regarded to be an effective method for identifying existing hazard deficiencies determined through assessment of associated risk levels. This provides opportunities for risk control improvement strategy development utilizing hazard risk level information to atain efficient acceptable risk reduction in a prioritized manner.

In addition to assessment of laging safety indicators which are reactive in scope such as occupational accidents and lost time injury rates / costs, an organization benefits from carrying out safety performance assessment through review of qualitative / quantitative leading safety indicator data. Leading indicators measure the positive inputs that staff and management are making to improve the occupational health and safety management system.

Use of both laging and leading indicator data is a highly efficient method for identifying needed improvement change/s for hazard risk control factors in a prioritized fashion. The subsequent implementation of hazard risk control improvements will have a strong likelyhood of reducing staff injury and occupational disease rates that in turn will result in reducing associated patient errors and persistent escalating healthcare costs. This is a recipe for developing genuine sustainable occupational health and safety conditions, high quality error-free patient care, and ultimately set the foundation for a strong organizational sustainable holistic safety culture that addresses both patient and staff safety concerns. The above recommendations should be noted in particular by Human Resources Department Administrators responsible for occupational safety and health by increasing their knowledge and appreciation of the significant value to their organization of a high quality "occupational health and safety management system" that promotes a strong safety culture gained from using progressive techniques and industry standards such as those of the CSA.


  • Uncompromising integrity, trust & ethics 
  • Professional competence through continuous learning and knowledge acquisition


    • Consensus-Building Skill strong interactive colaborative interpersonal skills with general staff, trades professionals, all levels of management, academics, credible technical professionals, and contractors. Accomplished through active listening to other's points of view, asking questions as appropriate, and striving to achieve resonable compromise and collective consensus. Strive for a winning conclusion.

    • Analytical and Critical Skills through use of logical thinking and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of a complex challenge and identify creative solutions to solve problems effectively in a timely manner

    • OHS Legislation - extensive detailed knowledge of legislation and long-term experience in compliance assessment, as well as various techniques necessary for regulation enforcement: Canadian Provincial Occupational Health and Safety Acts Ontario, Quebec, NS, BC, etc; Canadian Labour Code Part Two; U.S. OSHA regulations and guidelines

    • Occupational Safety Management Systems Development and Internal Audit / Identifying and Assessing Leading and Laging Safety Performance Indicators (CAN/CSA-Z1000-14); ANSI Z10; OHSAS 18001; ISO 45001- 2018)

    • Occupational Health and Safety Program Development, Initiation, and Performance Assessment

    • Occupational Hazard Identification and Hazard Risk Assessment determination /  development of prioritized cost effective risk control measures in accordance with AIHA guidelines and the ACGIH -

    • Senior Level Professional Writing Skill: occupational safety audit reports, accident / occupational disease investigation reports, safety inspection reports, compliance violation reports; standard safe operating procedures (SOP); corporate policies and associated industry best practice procedures

    • Healthcare and Academic (university) occupational health and safety knowledge and hands-on field experience >25 yrs.

    • Occupational Health extensive knowledge of - human toxicology, disease pathology, and infection prevention assessment and control methodology

    • Occupational / Industrial Hygiene trained in field with practical experience (>15 years), leading industrial hygiene walk-through workplace survey investigations to identify occupational hazards / risks and develop exposure monitoring plan, working colaboratively with CIH personnel, project management and oversight, and supervision of certified industrial hygiene technicians

    • Medical / Academic Research Laboratory Safety: inspection / GHS and WHMIS / CBSG, BMBL / chemical hazard risk assessment and development of effective controls and processes

    • Occupational Accident Investigation: direct and root cause analysis / witness interview / incident site evaluation / accident trends analysis to determine areas requiring priority provention action measures - preparation of written report on results and prevention recommendations

    • Office Ergonomics: computer user evaluation to determine possible risk factors including related injury review; office ergonomic equipment assessment and cost effective improvement recommendations where required; provide onsite assistance to affected employees including brief but comprehensive ergonomic training on proper equipment set-up and use / provide ergonomic advice to administration staff

    • Asbestos and Mould: sample collection and submission to an AIHA® Laboratory Accreditation Program Certified Laboratory for sample assessment and identification; review samping results and submit written report with cost effective abatement / or control recommendations; abatement contractor selection and oversight; asbestos / mould management program development in compliance with legislative requirements and eliminate health hazard risks to building occupants and workers.

    Please view my Power Point presentation:

    An Integrated Healthcare Safety Management System - The Link Between Staff and Patient Safety - An Innovative Total Quality Holistic Approach for Effective Healthcare Safety Management
    “Raising the Bar to Achieve Total Quality Patient Care Excellence”
    (ppt presentation)

    Christopher J. Lipowski, CRSP

    Occupational Health and Safety Consulting Services (focus on integrity and achieving excellence)


    Website: Healthcare Safety Info-eLink™