Recent statistics reveal that around 35,000 back and other serious injuries are reported by nurses each year.
Healthcare workers are a risk for many workplace injuries. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, around 35,000 back injuries, other serious injuries are reported by nurses each year. Surprisingly, nurses suffer more back and other musculoskeletal injuries than any other type of worker including construction workers.
The biggest injury risk faced by nurses is the lifting and moving of patients. The problem could be partly due to the fact that nurses are often trained to lift patients while keeping their back straight and bending the knees, which is a poor posture and can cause injury.
Research conducted at Ohio State University claims there is no safe way to lift patients by hand. When nurses try to lift patients, they are at risk of suffering an injury, especially back injuries. While researchers have recommended that machinery should be used to move patients, most hospitals have not invested in this machinery. Therefore, nurses are at risk.
Causes of Workplace Injuries Among Nurses
- Lack of training
- Increasing obesity rates, which make patients harder to move
- Employer expectations requiring nurses to lift and move patients
- Lack of laws to prevent nurses from having to lift and move patients or excessively heavyweights
- Lack of machines, technology, and other support to help nurses in lifting and moving patients
- Nurses are often the first point of contact and have to interact with patients and visitors who can at times get aggressive and even violent
Some nurses have reported that they have to lift or move patients 15 or more times a day, which could cause injury over time. Experts are of the opinion that unless laws are in place requiring staff to make changes, the injury rates are expected to remain high.
Workplace Injuries Can Result in Long-Term or Even Permanent Injury
Nurses can sustain a variety of injuries varying in degree of severity. Some of the injuries can be serious, career-threating, disabling, and even fatal. For example, a serious back injury may leave the nurse disabled and prevent them from returning to work and cause chronic pain for the lifetime. In the case of a permanent injury, nurses often report that they receive benefits, but they are not sufficient to cover the cost of medical care, lost wages, and other related costs.
Have You Been Injured at Workplace?
If you are a nurse and have suffered an injury at the workplace, you may be entitled to workers compensation benefits. Workers compensation generally covers medical bills and wage loss for the time period that the worker is unable to work due to injury. If you have been injured on the job, contact an attorney at our law office to ensure your rights are protected. We can evaluate your claim free of charge and help you determine what the right steps are moving forward.
Call (816) 399-3706 today for a free consultation