Introduction to this document

Risk assessment - housekeeping and changing beds

Housekeeping and changing beds may present particular risks to staff, including dealing with potentially hazardous substances and manual handling.

Residual risk

If these risks are left unmanaged, they could cause accidents and potentially put you on the wrong side of the law. To ensure that this doesn’t happen, complete a risk assessment for such work which identifies all “significant” hazards and appropriate “reasonable” ways of reducing risks to an acceptable level.

Managing the risks

To help you identify the hazards and the appropriate ways of controlling them, use our example Risk Assessment - Housekeeping and Changing Beds. It covers the generic hazards associated with this type of activity and suggests control measures to reduce risks to an acceptable level.

Ensure that your document only addresses “significant” hazards, i.e. any that could and, more importantly, are likely to cause an accident or injury.

Note. This risk assessment only deals with the general hazards associated with housekeeping and changing beds. It will be up to you to examine the specific hazards associated with your work area and to develop your own risk assessment based on your findings.

Make your instructions clear

Don’t include activities in your document that simply don’t need to be there. Work to the principle that if there is any chance of your staff being unaware of the safe way of doing something, then you will need to make it clear in your document. Finally, always ensure that any control measures you identify and follow only go so far “as is reasonably practicable”.  

Note. The list of potential hazards is not exhaustive. However, for your risk assessment to be considered suitable and sufficient in the eyes of the law it must accurately reflect the “significant” hazards found in your workplace.