Season 03 Episode 04: We ask: “Who is at the heartbeat of your organisation?” In healthcare, that is often the nurse. Alan, Trajce, and Sara review complaints that were made by nursing staff to the regulator when hospital management announced their fitout of a nurses’ station that would remove a counter barrier. “It must be more than just a counter to stir such emotion,” says Sara, though she reminds the boys of the power of environmental design. Alan acknowledges the symbolism of a counter as a barrier to mitigate the escalation of occupational violence. Trajce demands decisions as he role plays the job of the hospital executive director. Alan implores managers to ask direct questions of workers to uncover their needs or concerns. Trajce just wants to know if he’ll get some Brooklyn donuts, though he must hide them from his wife given her ‘no sugar’ mantra (the donuts will be his escape from the ‘not-quite-cherry-ripes’). This episode prompts consideration of the Australian Work Health and Safety Act 2011, section 46 and section 47 (on ‘consultation’).
Thank you to subscriber Neil Logan of New South Wales, Australia, who nominated the case about the built environment in a psychiatric ward and the staff’s perceived safety protections arising from the station counter.