When running a company, the health and safety of your employees comes as a priority. As an employer, you are responsible for ensuring a hazard-free work environment for all your staff members and protect them from possible accidents. But as it often happens, not everything goes as planned. Even if you take all the necessary measures to keep your employees out of danger and comply with all the health and safety regulations, you can’t possibly predict everything that can go wrong and accidents can still happen.

The way you respond in these circumstances can make all the difference. That’s why it’s important to have a protocol in place to handle work related injuries. So, what’s to be done when the unexpected occurs and one of your employees gets injured? Here are the steps that all employers should follow:

Get medical help

The first thing you should do is seek medical care for your employee. Even if the worker’s injury doesn’t seem like anything serious, it’s still necessary for a medical professional to check him and assess his condition. Transport the employee to a medical unit as fast as possible if you’re dealing with a mild injury, and if the injury is indeed serious, call the emergency services.

Take care of the paperwork

Once your employee has received medical care and is safe, it’s time to focus on the paperwork. You must complete an incident report and should the worker want to file a claim, you must provide him with the necessary claim form. In case he decides to pursue a claim, the injury must be reported to your worker’s compensation company within 24 hours. You should also have records with all essential information ready, in the event of a lawsuit, and cooperate with legal representatives. For example, if your employee chooses to work with an injury lawyer in Houston, you must provide him with the information he requires.

Set up a return-to-work program

Depending on the seriousness of the accident, it might take some time until the employee can resume work. To support his recovery and help the employee get back to work as soon as possible, you should establish a return-to-work program. These programs usually include modified work duties or jobs to make the transition smoother, since it’s probably going to be difficult for the employee to carry out his usual tasks. The employee doesn’t necessarily have to perform the same role or even work in the same department as before the accident.

Update safety measures

It’s your duty to make sure such accidents don’t occur a second time. You must take it as a lesson and learn from this experience so you can prevent things like these from happening in the future. With your new knowledge you can take additional safety measures and reduce risks significantly. Every time an accident takes place on your premises, you must upgrade your safety program and come up with new solutions to eliminate possible hazards.