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5 Ways to prepare your medical facility for Halloween

Something wicked this way comes [i]… Is your facility ready?

In the recent years, the celebrations for Halloween have been intensified. More people participate in the festivities and as such, more people are vulnerable to the dangers of the holiday. A well-prepared organization is able to avoid chaos and even participate in the festivities.

Here’s 5 ways you can prepare your medical facility for the highs & lows of Halloween. Be ready for the bizarre, the unexpected and the ghostly.

  1. Bugs and Hisses – Shift Coverage
  • AB Med cross Keep Calm & Carry a Wand

Finding coverage for shifts on the eve or on the day of Halloween. The weekend before Halloween might be an issue as well.

  • Give ’em Pumpkin to Talk About

Having a “sudden illness” or “no show” for the days around Halloween

  1. Halloween Boo-Boos – Increase in Halloween related Injuries
  • Car Accidents during Treat-or-Trick
Children are 4 times more likely to be struck by cars on Halloween than on other nights[i]
  • Slip and Fall

Leaves, rain or snow can create slippery conditions. Even in good weather, being out after sundown at unfamiliar paths can be enough to increase the fall incidence. Oversized or unbalanced costumes, masks and makeup can make navigating the Halloween night a harrowing affair.

  • Pumpkin Carving Injuries

Most common injuries are minor cuts and lacerations on the non-dominant hand.

  • Costumes Gone Wrong
  1. Most common injuries are minor cuts and lacerations on the non-dominant hand.

Allergic Reaction to costume material or make up

  1. Spooky Eyes

Eye Injuries due to novelty contact lenses or glitter makeup

  1. Burn Jack-o-Lantern Burn

Fake beards, spider webs, fairy wings and all those nylon costumes are flammable. The danger intensifies when real candles are used inside Jack-o-Lanterns or as Halloween decorations.

  1. Peek-a-Boo

The patients’ costumes may obscure Injuries or Symptoms. For example heavy makeup can hide pale, hypoxic or jaundice skin. The medical staff needs to navigate behind the fake blood or the bulky costumes to uncover signs, symptoms and locations of injuries.

  • No Tricks, just Treats!
  1. Spookilicous

The patients’ costumes may obscure Injuries or Symptoms. For example heavy makeup can hide pale, hypoxic or jaundice skin. The medical staff needs to navigate behind the fake blood or the bulky costumes to uncover signs, symptoms and locations of injuries.

  1. I am Here for the Boos

Holidays is a common time for alcohol abuse, either intentional or accidental. Overconsumption of alcohol has many ramifications such as fights that lead to injuries, alcohol poisoning and patients who are unpleasant and don’t cooperate

  1. I’m Totally Ghoul

Taking drugs to “celebrate” Halloween can lead to overdose or behavioral issues. Also, as marijuana edibles become more commonplace, be vigilant for accidental ingestion.

  1. Come to the Dark Side we have Pumpkin and Spice – Volume Increase

All those Halloween Boo-Boos increase the patient volume for all healthcare facilities.

Arm your staff with patience (for all those spooked parents that think the red puke is blood and not candy) and vigilance for what might crawl through your doors.

  1. Be SPOOK-tacular – Inappropriate Staff Costumes for Halloween

Death, Vampire, Devil, Zombie etc., medical professionals have a great sense of humor; however, some patients might not appreciate it in their time of need.

In addition, costumes should not prohibit the individual or their team, from performing their job tasks.

  1. Creep it Real – Celebrate

Allow the staff who want to participate in the celebration an opportunity to do so.

Small decorations, treats and sensible costumes will provide a note of celebration to all staff, patients and visitors.

Be prepared, keep the six Cs in mind: Cars, Cocktails, Carvings, Costumes, Candy and Candles and have a Happy Halloween Halloween woos not your brew? Let AB Med help… contact us

COVID-19 Disclaimer

At AB Med, accuracy is our highest priority, and everything we publish is up-to-date based on research and news at the time of release. However, due to the continually evolving nature of COVID-19, we are aware that available data changes quickly. The available data and recommendations may have changed since this article’s publication. Please check the CDC, WHO, and your local health department for the most current recommendations and news.

REFERENCES & RESOURCES

By: Erik McLaughlin MD, MPH and Aikaterini Papadopoulou, B.Arch

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Erik McLaughlin MD, MPH
Chief Medical Officer
Innovative Solutions for your Healthcare Needs

My team consists of a variety of healthcare experts that are at your disposal. For insight into how we can figure out solutions for your community, let’s talk.

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