No matter how many precautions they take, health care professionals face several hazards on a daily basis while doing their job. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 56,000 work-related illnesses and injuries in U.S. hospitals in 2013. Here is some information about the most common workplace hazards for health care professionals.
Not all work-related injuries are linked to a single distinct event, such as an accident. The daily grind of many jobs may lead to a cumulative stress injury that can be debilitating. Many people may have heard of carpal tunnel syndrome, a common repetitive strain injury in today's workforce. However, repetitive stress injuries can affect many areas of the neck, back, shoulders and limbs.
The trucking industry is highly regulated. However, that does not mean that professionals who transport goods across town or over the road are fully protected from unreasonable demands and other hazards that increase the risk for injury. Over the road and local truck drivers often face a variety of issues that drivers of passenger vehicles may not fully understand.
If you are experiencing some form of hearing loss, you're not alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4 million workers go to work each day in damaging noise. Additionally, 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous noise each year. The occupational hazards associated with hearing loss are very expensive.
People in any industry can suffer an injury on the job. Some occupations are regarded as being dangerous. Often, when speaking of workplace injuries, the construction industry gets a lot of attention. However, healthcare workers know that hazards exist in hospitals, nursing homes, and residential care facilities.
Employees or contractors who work in the heat have an increased likelihood of heat exhaustion, heat cramps and heat stroke. Your body attempts to regulate its own temperature by forcing blood to the surface of our skin. That means that there is less blood to go to your brain, organs and muscles. Prolonged exposure can be extremely dangerous.
Our firm has helped people facing all manner of on-the-job injuries. We've seen people with back pain caused by repetitive motions, clients who broke bones in slip-and-fall accidents in the workplace, and employees who paid the price for their employers' lax safety protocols. An area where we've also been able to help clients collect the workers' compensation benefits due them is work-related car accidents.
Back injuries are the most common type of work injury and workers' compensation claim. As a byproduct of rehabbing, workers suffering from back injuries or chronic back pain are especially at risk of becoming addicted to opioid painkillers. Relief from the physical pain gives way to other types of suffering - the addiction itself and the personal aftermath such as depression, job loss, financial troubles, professional license sanctions, criminal charges and divorce.
This story by Michael Grabell of ProPublica and Howard Berkes of NPR should concern us all.
One fallacy that is usually perpetuated by some employers is that an injured employee MUST go to the doctor or clinic that their employer chooses. This is not true.