Nurses, orderlies, and other health care workers spend their working hours helping other people heal from illnesses and injuries. Working in the health care industry can be rewarding, because of the positive feelings that accompany helping others, but it is also stressful work, in addition to being physically demanding, and sometimes even dangerous.
Every year, over six hundred and fifty thousand health care workers experience work-related illnesses or injuries. Many health care workers who are injured must take time off from work to recover. In fact, the number of injury-related absences is approximately four times higher for health care workers than it is for people who are employed in other fields.
Back injuries are a frequent occurrence among nurses and others who work in health care, and they are the leading cause of injuries to health care workers. Back injuries often occur when aides, nurses, and other workers move or reposition patients. Sometimes, workers attempt lifts on their own because not enough staff are available to ensure that lifts are performed by multiple workers or because there are no mechanical devices available that they could use to lift the patients. In situations where multiple workers perform a lift, there is still a high risk for injury due to unpredictable movements by the patient or communication errors among the staff who are performing the lift. Mechanical devices which assist in lifting patients greatly reduce the risk of injury, but, as noted before, they are not always available.
Unfortunately, many health care facilities do not have clear rules and procedures in place for lifting and moving patients, nor are there rules for safe patient handling imposed upon employees and facilities from outside agencies like OSHA. Unfortunately, many health care employees who experience back injuries must often miss work, at least for a short period of time, while they recover. Workers who experience severe back injuries are often unable to return to work in their previous positions.
Other causes of injuries in the health care environment occur when employees slip and fall, or when they contract infectious diseases. Injuries caused by repetitive motion are also fairly common among health care workers. Some health care workers are even injured by chemical exposures, or by acts of violence in the workplace.
One reason why so many workers in health care facilities may be getting hurt at work is that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the government agency which is responsible for ensuring safe work conditions, does not inspect health care facilities as frequently as it inspects other types of workplaces, such as construction sites.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Workplace Injury Attorneys Serving Clients Throughout Mississippi
Nurses and others who work in the health care industry are at a greater risk of being injured at work than most other workers, including those who do jobs in fields like construction and over the road trucking. If you are a health care worker who has been hurt at work, you can get top-quality legal assistance from qualified Mississippi Workplace Injury Attorneys by calling the Giddens Law Firm, P.A., at (601) 355-2022.