People who work at hospitals often get into that line of work because they want to help other people, but what they may not realize is that there is a lot of risk that comes from medical employment. Hospital workers are more likely than many other professionals to get hurt at work.
There are numerous environmental factors that influence risk for hospital workers, but there are certain issues that are responsible for the vast majority of worker injuries in hospital settings. Learning about the three most common reasons that hospital workers reported a workplace injury could help you avoid getting hurt on the job.
Pushing their bodies too hard
Those tasked with the care of other people in a vulnerable situation will often do everything in their power to ensure the safety and comfort of their charges. Hospital workers often have to move from patient to patient quickly and perform physically-laborious tasks, like lifting someone with limited mobility from their bed.
Heavy lifting and constant physical demands are among the reasons why 48% of lost-time incidents at hospitals involved employees over-exerting themselves. Springs, strains and even hernias are examples of overexertion injuries.
Falls, slips and trips
In some hospital settings, workers may need to go from one floor to another. Other times, they may have to rush from one end of a ward to the other to respond to an emergency.
Rushing around, especially in the facility that offers food service and deals with bodily functions, puts people at risk of slipping, tripping or falling. Hospital workers falling on the job accounts for another 25% of all lost-time injuries in hospital settings.
Accidental physical contact with dangerous objects is another common cause of hospital worker injuries, responsible for 13% of reports.
Hospital staff members could hurt themselves by poking themselves with a needle that has already been used on a patient or by inhaling cleaning fumes. Everything from the medications that they dispense to the machinery that they use in surgeries will put hospital workers at risk if they come into contact with that object unintentionally.
Hospital workers who understand the risks at work can avoid getting hurt and will know when to stand up for themselves if they do suffer an injury. Filing a workers’ compensation claim can help hospital workers who need to take time off to recover from an injury they suffered on the job.