One of the primary goals of any veterinarian is keeping customers safe from accidents at their facility. This is crucial for building and upholding a veterinarian’s reputation. Dogs, cats and other animals often feel trapped when in an unfamiliar environment and may lash out, which could result in someone in the office- a worker, customer, or even perhaps a vendor suffering a serious injury.
Veterinary pet insurance will pay for the medical costs that could be associated with an animal attack. This valuable liability insurance would also help pay any court costs if a lawsuit is filed against the company. But ideally, taking some preventative measures could greatly reduce the possibility of an injury occurring.
Many vets have taken advantage of the opportunity to combine some simple safety tips, along with online training courses, for a complete safety and loss prevention package. The goal is to help veterinary practice owners keep customers happy, increase profits, and in some cases, reduce risk and insurance premiums.
Safety tips for the veterinary office
There are several ways to uphold a safe workplace for employees and customers at minimal or no cost:
- Maintain the building’s interior and exterior
- Keep parking lots and sidewalks in good condition, clear of ice, snow and debris
- Provide dusk-to-dawn lighting for the exterior of the building and parking lot
- Protect utilities, such as gas meters and transformers, with physical barriers
- Keep walkways free and clear and make one-way entrances and exits to avoid startling pets
- Clearly post animal-control rules
- Inspect retail displays to make sure they are secured and won’t topple over
- In some cases, separating animals, such as cats and dogs, in the waiting area can keep animals and people out of harm’s way
- Make sure areas where customers walk are in good physical condition and are clear of equipment
Inspect all business equipment regularly
In addition to regularly inspecting fire, burglary, sprinkler and alarm systems, it is also a good idea to have the shop’s wiring, heating, air conditioning and refrigeration units checked regularly. Develop a business interruption plan, which should include inventory, equipment, and record replacement in the event of a total loss of the facility.
Properly trained employees reduce risks
Make sure employees have been trained in storage and dispensing practices for aerosols, combustibles, flammable liquids and cleaning supplies and can properly use fire extinguishers. Consider providing first aid training as well. These practices will help ensure that the practice has lessened its exposures, but veterinary pet insurance will always be needed when an unforeseen incident occurs.