The Department of Health is committed to protecting the personal safety and security of its employees and recognises the need to have guidelines aimed at protecting staff from risks. It also aims to ensure healthy relationships between managers, employees and the public to create a positive working environment where staff will operate to the best of their ability, providing a high standard of customer service.
Quality and Customer Service: One of the Department’s common objectives is
"To provide quality service to the public". The Quality and Customer Service Strategy covers all areas of the Department of Health activities that affect the customer, including elements such as service availability, timeliness, value for money and customer support. It covers four key areas in providing a high quality customer service: identifying key service characteristics such as quality, quantity and speed; providing a service that the customer wants and perceives as being of value to them; ensuring a skilled and competent workforce; providing good communication and the right information, at the right time in the right format.
The Code of Practice for the Delivery of Services to Customers: This was developed to provide a set of generic customer service standards which clearly state the customer service principles followed by the Department. It covers Consultation and Choice, Service by Telephone, Visitors, Home Visits, Letters, Information and Complaints. Each public area and work place will display The Code of Practice in poster format and copies in leaflet format.
Equal Opportunities: No employee should be subjected to discriminatory treatment on the grounds of gender, marital status, age, sexual orientation, colour, race, disability, religion or ethnic origin. They should not be disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justified for sound operational reasons. Employees with grounds for complaint should raise this through the grievance procedures set out in their terms and conditions. The Equal Opportunities Handbook and details of the contact officers (there are designated staff trained to support staff who believe that they have been unfairly treated) will be made available to staff.
Bullying, Harassment and Victimisation: The Department of Health is committed to eliminating bullying and harassment through both informal and formal methods and aims to raise staff awareness of the importance of a bullying/harassment free workplace. Confidential advice, guidance and support for victims and witnesses will be available from the network of Contact Officers, as well as from the Office of Human Resources Advisors. The Staff Welfare Office provide counselling, mediation and support services.
Violence and Aggression: Employees will have a duty to follow the Policy for the Management of Violence and Aggression. They should not put themselves at risk unnecessarily and should reduce the risk of provoking violence by adopting high standards of customer care and sensitivity. They should tell their line Manager about potentially dangerous situations and always report incidents to them.
Capability Procedure: The Capability Procedure will be applied when a problem arises concerning an employee’s work performance or the ability of an employee to carry out duties for which they are employed. The aim is to assist and encourage employees to achieve and maintain effective standards of job performance. The Department of Health endeavours to address unsatisfactory performance and give guidance to improve it, while ensuring consistent and fair treatment.
Disciplinary Procedure: The Department of Health recognises that the maintenance of conduct is essential to ensure efficiency and the safety and wellbeing of employees. The Disciplinary Procedure is to help correct inappropriate behaviour and conduct of employees.
Grievance Procedure: The Department of Health recognises that circumstances may arise in which staff feel aggrieved with some aspect of their employment. The Grievance Procedure is a way of trying to resolve these complaints, before they escalate.
Whistle-blowing: The Confidential Reporting Policy is intended to encourage and enable employees to raise serious concerns and problems they identify within the Government in order to seek resolution without fear of reprisal.
Human Rights: The Human Rights Act 2001 gives effect in the law of the Isle of Man to the fundamental rights and freedoms in the European Convention on Human Rights. There are sixteen rights which affect matters of life and death like freedom from torture and killing, as well as rights in every day life such as what you say or do, your beliefs, your right to a fair trial and many other basic entitlements. A Human Rights Leaflet is available to staff.
Information Maintenance and Security: Employees will undergo security awareness training before they will be able to access data. The Isle of Man Government has issued information security documents, which outline what is acceptable use and what isn't, which are available to staff. All employees with access to Government Information will be required to read relevant extracts from the Official Secrets Act and then sign a Declaration, committing to its content.
Financial Regulations: The Financial Regulations are made up of Directions and Guidelines. They are in accordance with the Treasury Act 1985, which states that the Treasury’s duty is “to supervise and control all matters relating to the financial affairs of the Department.” The Department is legally bound to comply with the Directions, and although the Guidelines are not legally binding, they are still expected to be complied with as they represent best practice in financial matters.
Trade Unions: The Department recognises the right of its employees to join a Union and the Trade Recognition Agreement will be available to staff. It is designed to promote, establish and maintain a firm foundation for harmonious working relationships between the Department of Health and its employees. This can be achieved through consultation and negotiation and for this purpose the Department encourages its staff to join a recognised union. All differences, disputes and grievances will be resolved in accordance with the Agreement.
Risk Management: A risk is the possibility of undesirable events occurring that might prevent or impact upon the achievement of the Department’s business objectives. The impact can be a threat to the delivery of the objectives or a missed opportunity. Risk Management is the logical and systematic method of identifying, analysing, evaluating, treating and monitoring risks in a way that will enable the organisation to meet its objectives and minimise losses and maximise opportunities. Members of staff will be asked to familiarise themselves with the Risk Management Policy. It is essential that they are aware of their role in the management of risk to an acceptable level. All employees are encouraged to revise potential risks with their line manager.