5 things nurses must remember about on-the-job injuries

Nursing is a rewarding occupation, but it is also a very demanding job. Nurses must be careful when they work because they can face significant injuries if they move incorrectly or don’t use proper techniques. When a nurse suffers an injury, he or she might have to take off work while the injury heals. This can place a financial burden on the nurse and the family members who count on him or her for support.

#1: Accident-related injuries can occur

It is possible for nurses to suffer injuries because of an accident. One example is if the floor is wet and the nurse falls. This type of slip-and-fall accident can result in significant injuries. However, nurses face the risk of coming into contact with bodily fluids if they fall. This can lead to significant issues later in life.

#2: Repetitive motion injuries are possible

Nurses might face repetitive motion injuries. Constantly bending over to care for patients, using a computer and taking care of other job duties can cause injuries. Back injuries, knee injuries and carpal tunnel injuries are all possible.

#3: Certain illnesses might lead to claims

Illnesses that are the result of on-the-job factors can lead to claims. Nurses usually have to get specific vaccinations in order to work. However, vaccinations don’t cover all illnesses. Viral and bacterial illnesses are possible. Nurses who care for critically ill patients, such as those with Ebola or other fairly rare conditions, might end up getting sick with that same condition.

#4: Most injuries and illnesses are preventable

Preventative measures reduce the risk of injuries and illnesses. Ergonomic devices can help to prevent repetitive motion injuries. Using devices to help lift patients and using proper lifting techniques can prevent lower back injuries.

Contact precautions, such as full gowning, masks, eye shields and gloves can prevent nurses from coming into contact with many communicable diseases and bodily fluids. In some cases, such as hemorrhagic fevers, hazmat protections are often necessary. Hospitals and other medical facilities should provide all these necessities for nursing staff members.

#5: Workers’ compensation is often possible

Nurses who suffer injuries or illnesses due to on-the-job factors can file a claim for workers’ compensation. This can help them to get the medical care they need. It can also help them to cover basic expenses by replacing some of the wages they weren’t able to earn. You may have to file an appeal if you apply and don’t receive the benefits to which you are due.

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