In California, medical professionals can suffer injuries in a variety of circumstances. Some of the more common may involve cuts from sharp objects, needle pricks, trauma from falls or broken bones. Most people don’t associate medical care with lifting injuries, but when moving patients, there is a lot of damage that can be inflicted.
Types of injuries that can occur from moving patients
Hospital workers are frequently required to move patients. This is one of the riskiest parts of the job as it can cause musculoskeletal injuries. Especially vulnerable are the neck, back and lower body. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that nursing assistants are consistently near the top of the list in sustaining injuries directly related to lifting and moving patients. In 2019, more than 20,000 of these health care workers suffered from specific injuries, like sprains and strains, or were simply sore and in pain, leading to missed time at work.
Moving people as they are prone in bed, helping them shower, transferring a patient from the bed to a chair, and other standards of the job place workers in awkward physical positions. The older, heavier or less mobile a patient is, the more complicated it is to move him or her. Proper training and taking precautions may help, but it does not eliminate injuries for those in high-risk occupations like health care.
Lifting injuries and lost time at work may warrant workers’ compensation
Since these injuries can be so problematic, it is important to understand what may occur in the aftermath. Missing work, medical expenses, lost income and issues being able to do the same job as before are all possible. Workers’ compensation benefits can be critical to address these challenges and more. Having professional guidance can be helpful when deciding how to proceed in obtaining benefits.