On Thursday 25 October, we had the pleasure of attending the Safe Work NSW Awards night as a Finalist in the leadership Category. Although we were not the chosen winner, we were really proud to be part of this prestigious event. Congratulation to Bridie Gloag from Coca-Cola Amatil on winning the leadership award this year.

Aideen Gallagher is Co-Director of Risk Managed, an organisation which develops programs for health professionals, care givers and disability organisations to help keep care workers safe at work.

In 2017, Aideen authored a best-selling book, ‘The Manual Handling Revolution’, a blueprint to help achieve her aims of keeping care workers safe on-the-job and recognising the mental health impacts of manual handling for both clients and their carers.

From her work in this arena over 15 years, Aideen has identified a gap in workplace health and safety (WHS) knowledge and training. She recognises care workers weren’t aware of how to properly evaluate and eliminate risk, prescribe equipment effectively and support clients compassionately during the manual handling process. This leads to increased WHS risks regarding personal safety.

Through her book and HoistEd training program – which has so far provided training to more than 1000 health professionals – Aideen teaches how to effectively mitigate risk, maximise resources and provide quality care.

Aideen is dedicated to improving care worker safety not only in NSW, but across the globe. Following her book becoming a ‘#1 Amazon Best Seller in Australia and the USA’, Aideen has been invited to address national conferences in the UK and USA.

She is working with iCare NSW to evaluate risk-managed methods in keeping care workers safe and has developed the ‘Injury Shield’ program to help disability organisations implement a risk management framework. Her manual handling system is currently being peer-reviewed by the University of Sydney and the University of Newcastle, with a hope to integrating the system into a diploma course for carers of aged persons or people with disabilities.

Aideen has donated all the profits from book launch sales to The Estia Foundation. The Foundation supports families of people with disabilities by providing respite care, and will be donating all profits from book sales to the Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society for a week-long period in November 2018.

Through her tireless efforts to protect care workers and bring about widespread industry change, Aideen demonstrates excellence in safety leadership and seeks to solve an identified WHS issue along with supporting SafeWork NSW achieve a 30% reduction in musculoskeletal injuries by 2022.