General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital was recognized for embracing a culture of safety June 21.

Brig. Gen. Jeffrey Johnson, commanding general, Regional Health Command-Central, presented the award.

"Culture change is something that is much closer to the vest. Something that is deeper inside of the heart. That really is what's at the essence of what safety and occupational health recognition as about," said Johnson.

GLWACH earned the Army Safety and Health Management System Star, joining an elite group of military medical facilities in Army Medical Command. Johnson said only 10 percent of military treatment facilities have earned star status.

The ASHMS Star award is based on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's Voluntary Protection Program in which organizations must complete a process of 243 tasks over three stages within a three year period.

To earn the ASHMS Star every employee must embrace a commitment to safety. There are four elements of ASHMS that are measured: management leadership and employee involvement, work site analysis, hazard prevention and control and safety and health training.

Johnson got to the heart of what it means to earn star status. He said it isn't about the flag that will be hung but it's how safety within the organization impacts the patients.

"How does every patient that walks into the facility walk out. Do they walk out better than when they came in," said Johnson.

This wasn't an easy task to accomplish and it took everyone, from top down, to truly embrace safety in all aspects of daily work. The result is a safer workplace.

"Our collateral duty safety officers and staff have put their hearts and souls into achieving this to make our facility a safe place to come to work," said George Dalgetty, safety and occupational health technician.

Safer workplaces allow medical staff to focus more on patients. If a staff member gets injured at work it takes them away from patient care. It also puts the focus on ensuring equipment is safe.
Star site recognition is given to units that demonstrate a culture of safety and all members of the organization understand their role in promoting a safe environment.