Several investigations into workplace injuries of nurses and orderlies reveal a large number of career ending injuries. Orderlies and nursing assistants suffer 35,000 injuries a year. These injuries are often bad enough that they cause missed work time. Studies show that nursing aides or orderlies have roughly the same chance of back and other workplace injuries as firefighters and three times the chance of injuries as construction workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Nursing staff mainly suffer these injuries when lifting or moving patients. Nurses do this dozens of times a shift with possibly heavy or immobile patients. Nurses must deal with lifting possibly heavy patients without enough staff or a lift to help. This is a recipe for a career ending injury.
The healthcare industry knows about these risks, researchers at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health did a study on this issue in the 1990s. Electric lifts for patients have existed since the 1900s. Despite this, most hospitals have not fixed this issue or only partially solved it. A study at Kaiser Permante hospitals revealed a lack of training, staff, and lifting devices.
The Baptist Health System in Florida, and hospitals run by the Department of Veteran Affairs, have reduced these types of injuries by 80% with enough equipment and staff training, proving this is a solvable problem in healthcare. Most hospitals have yet to head in this direction, though, and an increased focus on getting patients walking quickly worsens the issue.
If you or your loved one has suffered a back or other injury in the healthcare profession you may be entitled to compensation. At the Worker’s Compensation firm of Galfand Berger, our experienced workers compensation attorneys can handle your workplace injury claims and help you obtain compensation. We have favorably secured numerous Workers’ Compensation settlements in Philadelphia. Call the Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation lawyers at Galfand Berger at 1-800-222-USWA (8792) or submit a free online inquiry.