Backed by our global Safety, Health and Environment (SHE) Policy, which requires the integration of safety and health considerations into all our activities across the company, we work continuously to ensure that the risks are understood and managed responsibly.
We have global standards and procedures that set the minimum SHE performance requirements for particular risk areas including driver safety, fire safety, process safety, industrial hygiene, control of chemical exposure, biohazard, and ergonomics. In each of these areas, we have specialist networks that help to communicate and implement the global standards, share learning and address emerging issues.
We also have a global team of health and hazard assessment specialists who characterise the hazards associated with all AstraZeneca pharmaceuticals by evaluating their toxicological, pharmacological, physical/chemical and environmental properties. The purpose is to keep AstraZeneca staff, third parties, the environment and the public safe during the manufacturing and R&D processes, and the movement of materials. This information is communicated to company sites and functions and to third parties in various formats (safety data sheets, material safety data sheets, dangerous goods documents, supply labels, etc), which must be in compliance with existing national/regional regulations. Additional risk assessment tools, such as an internally developed hazard group and risk calculator and occupational exposure limits for all APIs, support local sites in providing a safe working environment for our employees.
Our health and wellbeing programmes help employees to understand their personal health risks and are designed to empower staff to proactively manage these risks and generally improve their health and wellbeing.
We continue to review our safety and occupational health risk profiles to ensure that we stay on track to meet our 2015 objectives. We have identified the need for improvement in several risk areas, whilst continuing to maintain tight control of our major safety and health risks in existing and new facilities. Driver safety continues to be a key risk area for improvement. Other areas include manual handling, working with machinery and slips, trips and falls and we are using in-depth root cause analyses to make sure that we take the most appropriate actions for improvement. In occupational health, stress management and ergonomics remain a particular focus.
In this section, we describe the steps we are taking to drive further improvement in key areas of our safety, health and wellbeing activity, together with details of our performance to date.