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Florida's Blood Centers Receives Two More SHARP Awards

Florida's Blood Centers (FBC) is the winner of two more prestigious SHARP awards for displaying outstanding commitment to workplace safety. The not-for-profit blood supplier provides blood products to 70 hospitals and healthcare facilities in 21 counties in Florida. Employees at FBC understand the importance of workplace safety and consider it one of their highest priorities.

FBC has been working with USF SafetyFlorida as a resource to further enhance its internal safety and health management system while at the same time reduce workers compensation insurance premiums. In 2009 FBC’s headquarter office in Orlando underwent its first on-site consultation with Mylene Kellerman of USF SafetyFlorida and was offered guidance on how to reduce DART and TRC rates through a variety of mechanisms including trending incident data. FBC has empowered all of its employees to be involved with enforcing workplace safety. Frontline staff meets monthly for safety meetings and branch managers receive workers compensation training. Safety is part of Florida’s Blood Centers’ culture.

Teresa Nealer, FBC’s safety and health manager says the program has been very well received by FBC team members. "The amount of excitement Mylene was able to generate regarding our safety program among staff has been a great contribution," Nealer said.

In 2009 FBC’s headquarters office was the recipient of the SHARP award and this year FBC's Miramar and Lake Park branches were also declared SHARP certified. Both branches have worked hard to maintain or reduce DART and TRC rates. Between 2008 and 2010 the Miramar branch held its DART rate consistently at zero while Lake Park reduced its DART from 1.4 to 1.3.

According to Nealer, management is in favor of working with USF SafetyFlorida. "Our executive team is very supportive in our efforts, and the staff was very excited about the prospect of receiving this award," she explained. She added that, "it (on-site consultation) will assist you in achieving your safety goals and improving your health management systems. The benefits of SHARP far outweigh the hard work needed to complete the program," Nealer said.