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What is a health and safety policy in science?

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Quick Answer

Health and safety policies help protect workers from injury and illness by setting guidelines for safe work practices, explains Health and Safety Executive. Writing a health and safety policy in scientific workplaces protects scientists and technicians, according to the National Institutes of Health Office of Management.

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Full Answer

Scientific laboratories often contain equipment, chemicals and other items that may cause significant harm to people who misuse them or lack proper training, notes the National Institutes of Health. Laboratory workers are protected by health and safety policies that highlight the proper use of procedures and best practices. Examples of laboratory best practices include wearing appropriate clothing, attending required trainings, reporting equipment damage, using personal protective equipment and disposing of waste appropriately. Health and safety policies show employees how to apply these principles by requiring specific conduct when they are in the laboratory and conducting scientific work.

Some small organizations may not be required to have a written health and safety policy but still benefit from established standard safety procedures, states Health and Safety Executive. Companies may modify online templates to create policies in house and customize them for their own employees. Identifying hazards within the workplace and appropriately reporting accidents are important to maintaining a safe workplace, according to the National Institutes of Health.

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