March 31, 2015
Resuming Hospital Workplace Injuries: Here’s What You Should Know (Pt. 1), below, we’ll take a closer look at how hospital workers are most often getting hurt at work, as well as what the more common risk factors are for these injuries.
Hospital Workplace Injuries: Top 5 Causes of Injuries
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the leading causes of hospital workplace injuries are as follows (in order of most to less common):
- Overexertion and “bodily reaction,” which accounts for nearly half of all hospital workplace injuries – These types of injuries specifically include the physical trauma sustained from lifting heavy objects, bending over and/or reaching for things. In most cases, overexertion injuries specifically stem from moving or handling patients.
- Slips, trips and falls, which comprise about 1 in every 4 hospital workplace injuries – Factors like pooled liquids, uneven flooring and/or poor weather conditions outside can all contribute to these types of injuries.
- Contact with objects, with results in about 13 percent of all hospital workplace injuries – In particular, these injuries can result from being struck by objects, being caught or crushed between them, etc.
- Violence, which accounts for about 9 percent of hospital workplace injuries – While workplace violence can be an issue in any professional setting, it can be especially problematic in hospitals, particularly when it comes to handling/interacting with patients who may be living with mental illness.
- Exposure to substances, which comprises about 4 percent of all hospital workplace injuries – These substances can include anything from others’ infectious diseases to potentially harmful chemicals used for cleaning, etc.
Hospital Workplace Injuries: The Risk Factors
While any number of factors or circumstances can cause health care workers to get hurt while working at hospitals, generally, some of the most common risk factors for hospital workplace injuries include (but may not be limited to):
- Aging – As hospital workers get older, they are generally more susceptible to infections and/or physical injuries.
- Obese patients – When larger patients need help moving, bathing, etc., hospital workers who have to lift/help these patients are more likely to sustain back and/or other musculoskeletal injuries.
- Violence among patients – It’s not uncommon for violence to erupt in hospitals, as patients may have mental health issues, be disoriented, etc. This can make hospital workers easy targets, particularly when providing care to patients one-on-one.
- Ethical duties – Health care workers often take their duty to “not harm” patients to heart. This can mean that, in some cases, these workers may end up compromising their own safety to avoid possibly inflicting harm on a given patient (or group of patients).
Don’t miss the conclusion to this blog series for some crucial info about what can be done to better protect hospital health care workers and reduce the incidence of hospital workplace injuries.
Denver Workers’ Compensation Lawyer at the Bisset Law Firm
Have you been injured at work? If so, Denver Workers’ Compensation Attorney Jennifer Bisset wants you to know that she is here to aggressively advocate your rights and help you obtain the benefits you need and deserve.
You can contact Denver Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Jennifer Bisset by calling (303) 894-8900to learn more about your rights and receive a professional evaluation of your case. You can also email our firm by using the contact form on the right side of this page.
From her office based in Denver, Jennifer Bisset provides superior legal services to injured people throughout Denver County and the state of Colorado.