Jobs in health care are not only among the most important to a functioning society, they are also some of the most difficult and physically demanding. Therefore, if you are a doctor, nurse, physical therapist, etc., you may be at greater risk for work-related injuries than people who work in occupations considered more dangerous.
If you are a health care worker, your risk for certain work-related injuries is greater than others. Here are some of the most common job-related injuries occurring in a health care setting.
Slips, trips and falls
A slip, trip or fall can cause you to sustain injuries such as sprains or fractures. These can range in severity. Slips and trips may be due to the following:
- Inadequate lighting
- Poorly maintained walkway
- Cluttered passageways or work areas
- Uneven floor surfaces
- Slippery floors due to spills
In many cases, the responsibility to prevent slips and trips rests with the facility. However, you can help prevent them by picking up trash on the floor and cleaning up spills.
Falls can also occur due to lifting patients. The risk is greater if you must attempt this on your own because of inadequate staffing at the facility.
In addition to falls, patient handling can also lead to injuries of your soft tissues, such as muscle sprains and ligament tears, due to the heavy lifting involved. Patient handling injuries can occur gradually due to repetitive stress or acutely due to overexertion. For example, a patient may fall and you may push your body too far trying to prevent him or her from hitting the ground.
Adopting better ergonomics with the help of management at the facility may help you to prevent job-related injuries while working in the field of health care.