Hospital workers should be some of the safest workers because of the settings in which they work. When you see the results of accidents on a daily basis, it seems as though you would want to take steps to be as safe as possible. Unfortunately, the powers-that-be at hospitals don’t always prioritize safety.
There are some very specific hazards that these workers might face. It is imperative that all hospitals take the precautions necessary to prevent nurses, custodians and other workers from becoming injured during their shifts.
A surprising injury
The most common type of injury that hospital workers face isn’t due to an accident. Instead, injuries from overexertion are the most common types in this industry. These include sprains and strains that come from the taxing work that these individuals do.
One of the major hazards occurs when nurses and other workers have to lift and transfer patients. Using assistive devices can help reduce the risk of overexertion. When this isn’t possible, more than one employee should help to move the patient.
Another risk that workers face is having to bend over patients who are in bed. Stooping or raising the bed for exams can help reduce the damage that constantly bending over can have on the person’s back. These small changes can mean the difference between having a cumulative trauma injury and remaining healthy.
Slips and falls are common
Many different substances end up on the floor in a hospital. Bodily fluids are common in trauma bays. Other substances, including fluids from intravenous bags, might also end up on the floor. On top of the slip hazards, there can also be trip hazards, e.g., electrical cords. Workers must make sure they are watching where they walk to avoid tripping over these. People who might be exposed to these conditions on a regular basis can benefit from wearing slip-resistant shoes.
Effects of accidents
Hospital workers are more likely to continue working even though they think they have suffered minor injuries. This can lead to the injury worsening since the body part is still being used. It is possible that injured workers have to miss work in order to heal. This means that their income is impacted at a time when they might have an increase in medical bills due to the injury. Workers’ compensation can help to defray these expenses and provide the employee with a partial income during their healing period.