Home Care and Support

Are you a home care and support employer or do you work in the sector? Find out how to improve worker safety, increase quality of care, and save money through reduced claims and lower WorkSafeBC surcharges.

Introducing SafeCare BC for Home Care Workers

SafeCare BC has helped those in the long-term care sector prevent workplace injuries since 2013.

Now, this provincial leader in injury prevention is extending the scope of its services and training to home care and support employers.

Home care and support workers care for BC’s most vulnerable citizens, but they too are vulnerable.

In response, SafeCare BC is reaching out directly to home care and support employers and workers across the province to identify your needs, answer questions and develop an inclusive governance framework. Together, we can create safer workplaces for home care and support workers.

Workplace Injuries Cost Time and Money

Injury rates for BC’s 450 private and non-profit home support employers are among the highest in the province – more than double the provincial average.

The total cost of injury claims has more than doubled from $895,000 in 2010 to $1.97 million in 2014.

Over the past five years the total number of work days lost to injury in the home care and support sector has increased by 32% – from 27,604 in 2011 to 36,615 in 2015. At the same time, the total cost of injury claims has gone up for employers by 39% – from $5 million in 2011 to $7 million in 2015.

Number of workdays lost in the home care and support sector - 2011 vs. 2015

Workdays Lost – Home Care and Support Sector

The trend is expected to continue as the demand for home care and support services increases.

Here’s How SafeCare BC Can Help

If you’re a non-profit or private home care and support employer, we can help you improve worker safety, increase quality of care, and save money.

As a member, you will receive the following benefits from SafeCare BC:

  • Access to specialized training and education opportunities that reflect the sector’s real needs
  • Representation on SafeCare BC’s Board of Directors and expert Technical Advisory Committee, which includes senior labour, employer, and WorkSafeBC representatives
  • Collaborations with health authorities, the Alzheimer Society of BC, Care Aide Registry, BC Care Providers Association, labour unions, Denomination Health Association, training colleges and other continuing care stakeholders
  • One-on-one assistance from SafeCare BC staff and subject matter experts
  • An in-depth understanding of WorkSafeBC’s procedures, legislation and resources
  • Participation in the development of a Certificate of Recognition accreditation program for BC’s continuing care sector
  • Networking and collaboration opportunities with provincial colleagues and other seniors care safety associations across BC and Canada

No membership fee is required to participate in SafeCare BC. The organization’s funding is provided through a dedicated portion of your WorkSafeBC annual base rate premium.

Over 450 BC home care organizations are eligible to benefit from SafeCare BC’s services in the province. Health authority owned and operated home support services are not included.

If your organization provides the below services, or if you work in any of the listed professions, SafeCare BC can help you prevent injuries on the job.

Services offered:

  • Family crisis support
  • Home support
  • In-home nursing care
  • In-home personal care
  • In-home post-surgery care
  • Long-term care relief staffing
  • Nursing assistant care
  • Nursing registry
  • Public health awareness programs
  • Home management support
  • Hospital relief staffing
  • In-home occupational therapy
  • Nursing labour supply
  • Personal assistance
  • Public health inspections

Job titles:

  • Community health workers
  • Licensed practical nurse
  • Nurse aide
  • Registered nurse
  • Counsellor
  • Live-in home support worker
  • Occupational therapist
  • Physiotherapist
  • Rehabilitation assistant
  • Community social service worker

Eighty-three per cent of care homes and 73 per cent of front-line workers who responded to SafeCare BC’s 2015 member survey say they have changed how they operate as a result of SafeCare’s resources.

“We have brought education back to our organization through the Train-the-Trainer approach used by SafeCare. Our injury rates are significantly lower since the formation of SafeCare.” Long-term Care Manager, SafeCare BC Member Survey, Dec 2015

“I’m using some of the techniques I’ve learned to interact better with my residents.” Health Care Aide on SafeCare BC’s in-person training, SafeCare BC Member Survey. Dec. 2015

Case Studies

The following scenarios demonstrate how two well-established Ontario employers actively participated in safety association programs to reduce employee injuries and associated costs.

Scenario One

Employer size: Large – more than 4,500 full-time employees

Challenge: In 2011, this employer lost 2,737 days of work to accidents, resulting in increased claims and rising premium surcharges.

Safety Action: The employer used video-based web tutorials for new staff member orientations developed by the Public Services Health & Safety Association, the Ontario association responsible for supporting workplace health and safety in the home care sector.

Outcome: Within 2.5 years, the employer reduced the number of work days lost to accidents from over 2,700 to 407. Injury rates dropped by more than 20% and the employer went from paying an annual surcharge of more than $1.7 million to receiving an annual rebate of over $1.4 million – a $3.2 million improvement to the bottom line.

Scenario Two

Employer size: Medium – approximately 400 full-time employees.

Challenge: In 2012, this employer joined a special safety group established by the Public Services Health & Safety Association in Ontario, and used resources produced and developed by the association.

Outcome: Within two years, the employer reduced the number of work days lost due to workplace accidents by five per cent and their annual surcharge of $80,000 was converted to an annual rebate of over $64,000. That is a $160,000 turnaround in just two years.

Ontario Success Stats

Frequency of musculoskeletal disorders in Ontario's home care sector; 2010 vs. 2014

Frequency of musculoskeletal disorders in Ontario’s home care sector


Want more information? Contact us at info@safecarebc.ca.