Christopher Lipowski, CRSP
Healthcare Occupational Health and Safety
Specialist

"Dedicated to Promoting Healthcare Occupational Health and Safety Management Performance Excellence and Achieving Safe Patient Care"

PERSONAL OBJECTIVE:

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.

PROFESSIONAL PROFILE:

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), http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2716472. (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 http://www.bcrsp.ca/. 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 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 culture and 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 their Safety Management System development initiatives based on the CSA-Z-1006 standard (currently the CSA-Z1000-14 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 provid high quality "safe" patient care.

Organizational Safety Culture and Achieving a Successful HSMS:

1. Strong organizational ethics and organizational persuit of continuous management excellence;

2. Organizational Senior Leadership that values their staff wellbeing and fully supports developing and supporting their occupational health and safety management system;

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

4. Credible, qualified, experienced, ethical OHS Profesionals are essential as members of the occupational health and safety team to assist organizations in achieving safety culture excellence and a safer workplace.

5. It is important to focus in a new direction regarding Safety Culture. 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. We need to looks at existing successs as well as opportunities for improvement.

6. Use of both laging and leading indicator data is a highly efficient method for identifying needed improvement change/s for existing safety controls in a prioritized fashion. The subsequent implementation of hazard risk control improvements will have a strong impact on reducing staff injury and occupational disease rates that in turn will help reduce associated patient safety errors and associated persistent escalating healthcare costs. This is a recipe for developing genuine sustainable occupational health and safety conditions, high quality safe patient care, and ultimately set the foundation for a sustainable holistic safety culture that addresses both patient and staff safety concerns.


CORE PERSONAL VALUES:

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

    STRENGTHS:
    • 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.

    • 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 and regulation enforcement: Canadian Provincial Occupational Health and Safety Acts, Canadian Labour Code Part Two; and 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 - Hierarchy of hazard control, a system used in industry to minimize or eliminate exposure to hazards. It is a widely accepted system promoted by numerous safety organizations. This concept is taught to managers in industry, to be promoted as standard practice in the workplace. These are elimination and substitution; engineering controls; and administrative controls and PPE. View - http://aeasseincludes.asse.org/professionalsafety/pastissues/051/02/020206as.pdf

    • 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 Organizations 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 occupational and industrial hygiene personnel

    • 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 for senior management 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 / training to 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)

    Thank you for your time to review my background,

    Christopher Lipowski, CRSP

    Occupational Health and Safety Consulting

    URL: Healthcare Safety Info-eLink™